Vendors still fleece train passengers

Vendors still fleece train passengers

Rlys yet to give electronic billing machines

Even as passengers continue to complain about being fleeced by vendors at railway stations in the capital, the railway board is still to clear proposal of providing electronic billing machine to the authorised vendors to check charging extra.

The majority of complaints  have been against the vendors selling eatables and soft drinks in the station premises.

“I had to buy two bottles of packaged drinking water. The vendor asked me for Rs 15 each despite the rate of a one-litre bottle of Rail Neer being Rs 12.

“The vendor said he is charging extra as it involves additional cost to cool the bottles in summer months,” said Ratnesh, boarding a Patna-bound train from New Delhi station.
He added that since he had time on his side, he went all the way outside the station on Paharganj side to buy water from a shop outside.

Similar complaints

Railway officials concede that the similar complaints have been received by the department in the past.

“Till the time the electronic billing machines are not available with the vendors, it is difficult to check the overcharging by them,” said divisional railway manger Ashwani Lohani.   

Railway officials had decided few months back to make it mandatory for all the vendors operating from major stations in the capital to give a bill for  every item sold to the passengers.

But the vendors had agreed to comply with the initiative only if the billing machines were provided by the authorities.

Sources in the railways said they still await final clearance from the board.

“The DRM in the past few months has written at least twice to the board about the proposal.

“However, there has been no headway on the issue. The division is yet to recieve even a reply to those letters,” the railway official said.

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