Railways vows to increase e-ticketing app users

Railways vows to increase e-ticketing app users

The UTS app to book unreserved tickets is gradually picking up users, as its registration doubled in a month.

But South Western Railways feel more app users in the IT hub would ease the swelling queues at the ticket counter that can better serve people from rural areas.

 N S Sridharamurthy, senior divisional commercial manager for Bengaluru, revealed that registrations at the UTS app reached 28,000 in the beginning of April and daily registrations are more than 300. "Queues before the counters can be reduced if more people use the app," he said.

Passengers from the Bengaluru division topped the number of app users, with 20,705 registrations, while Mysuru and Hubballi saw 5,009 and 2,239 passengers register. "But the numbers are too low for a tech capital," lamented a railway official.

On Thursday, 2.54 lakh unreserved tickets were printed at the counters of the Krantiveera Sangolli Rayanna station at Majestic, while bookings through the app did not cross 500.

Indeed, for the whole of March, 5,771 journey tickets and 523 season tickets were booked through the app. The total collection from the app, excluding the value stored in the Railways' e-valet, was
Rs 3.97 lakh.

"We know that not all passengers are aware of the smartphone technology or apps, but half of the railway commuters can shift to the app and allow rural people to access railway services (at the stations)," a railway official said.

Activists, especially those demanding the suburban rail network, feel people are letting slip a good initiative by the Railways.

Techie Suhas Narayanamurthy, who launched the RailJini app on Thursday to track the trains real-time, said people should support commuter trains that offer the most affordable form of transport.

"It's one of the best apps I've seen," Narayanamurthy said. "We'll definitely take initiatives to promote it by integrating RailJini with UTS. There are social media groups of passengers with more than 5,000 members. We'll discuss ways to promote apps for the Railways."

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