Know About Indian Railways
Indian Railways is most wide spread rail network in the World. Indian Railways is completely owned by the Central Government of India and is administered by the Ministry of Railways. Indian trains is the 4th largest rail network in the world.
Indian Railways formally commenced its passenger services on 16th April, 1853 with a small rail link connecting Bombay (now Mumbai) to Thane. By the end of 1880, Indian Railway system had spread its limbs about more than 9000 miles across the length and the breadth of the country.
Indian Railways has a young and energetic mascot, a cartoon elephant, ‘Bholu’ clothed elegantly in blue and white like a train guard with a flag in hand.
The corporation has its auxiliary wing, Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation that controls the catering and hospitality, budget and luxury tourism and web based reservation services related to Indian Railways.
The Railway website developed to undertake online reservations is operational 18 hours a day. From midnight to early morning, the website undergoes maintenance and servicing activities and hence is not available for customer support, reservations and status verification.
Indian Railways Special features
There are several comprehensible and user-friendly services provided by Indian Railways. These services have been designed to take some load off the railway ticketing and reservation department all over the country.
Indian Passengers can check their reservation status and send an enquiry to the department of railways through an SMS. There are pre-defined keywords that are assigned to different types of queries.
Online booking and advanced reservation of rail tickets is another important feature provided by the Indian Railways to facilitate convenient booking, saving the time and energy of both the corporation and the passenger.
Tatkal Scheme is a specialised service designed to allow urgent bookings in all classes except First AC and Executive class. Tatkal e-ticket service is available on selected trains.
Railways operates certain reasonably priced tour packages across the nation for domestic as well as foreign tourists. These tour packages are categorised under the ‘Bharat Darshan’ plan, with wide-ranging destinations and tourism packages.
Apart from passenger and travel service, Indian Railways also presents deluxe and heritage packages and services through special luxury/heritage and tourist trains such as Palace on Wheels, Royal Orient Express, Golden Chariot, Deccan Odyssey, Royal Rajasthan on Wheels, The Fairy Queen, Heritage of Wheels and Mahaparivivan Special Train.
IRCTC (Indian Railways Catering and Tourism Corporation Limited) came into online operations when the online trend was gaining momentum. It is the marketing portion of the Indian Railways and both are working together to bring reforms to organizational performance.
IRCTC portal of Indian Rail is the largest and fastest growing e-commerce website in the Asia-Pacific region. Online ticket booking options has offered immense help to the people who do not have much time. While doing the online reservation, one can find two kinds of tickets- E-tickets and I-tickets.
E- tickets are electronic tickets provided by Indian Railways. After confirmed ticket flashes on screen, you can take its print out. Take your identity card along with this printout and enjoy traveling in different parts of India. I- Tickets on the other hand need to be booked some days in advance. You need to fill in some personal data at the time of reservation I-tickets and for availing the service, one needs to pay some fee that includes courier charges too.