Central Railways’ Mumbai division has collected a whopping ₹ 100 crore from passengers travelling in the train without ticket. With this, Mumbai has become the first division in Indian Railways to achieve this remarkable feat. The amount has been collected from April 2022 to February this year from 18 lakh ticketless passengers. Last year, the figure was ₹ 60 crore. Central Railways has been warning people to avoid travelling in trains without tickets, but said passengers have been ignoring all the advice, leading to such huge collection.
”We don’t have a target to meet. Our main purpose through ticket checking exercise is to make travel of passengers comfortable and convenient. We intensified ticket checking after complaints that ticketless passengers are causing inconvenience to those who have bought tickets, both in trains and on stations and got this result. It’s a record in itself,” Central Railways chief public relations officer Shivaji Sutar told NDTV.
He added that the fine amount includes collection from ticketless passengers in suburban, as well as Express and other regular trains within the Mumbai division
The Mumbai division has 77 railway stations and 1,200 travel ticket examiners (TTEs), who are continuously on the lookout for passengers travelling without tickets.
”The body language of a passenger often tells us that there is something fishy. And our experience of looking at so many passengers every day also helps in spotting the culprits,” Preeti Singh, a TTE, told NDTV.
She added that it’s not easy to make a ticketless passenger pay as they make several excuses. ”But after they realise their mistake, we prosecute them under relevant sections,” said Ms Singh.
Central Railways said in a release that ₹ 100 crore includes fine of ₹ 87.43 lakh recovered from 25,781 passengers who were found travelling without tickets in air-conditioned local trains, and ₹ 5.05 crore from 1.45 lakh passengers travelling without tickets in first class coaches.