The IRCTC has ordered the closure of all onboard catering services in mail or express trains from March 22 until further notice in view of the coronavirus outbreak, according to an order from the railway subsidiary on Friday.
The Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has also decided to close all food plazas, refreshment rooms, Jan Aahars and cell kitchens until further notice.
“The static units supplying meals to prepaid trains which are in operation may continue to operate. The onboard catering services in mail express trains and TSV trains should be closed until further advice,” the order stated.
It also said that if there is a demand of onboard services then only propriety article depot (PAD) items, tea and coffee may be allowed to be sold in trains.
“Such operation should be conducted using minimum number of staff. The licensee should be requested to take care of their catering staff on humanitarian grounds during this period of closure.
“These instructions shall come into force from March 22. For the purpose of license fee this period will be covered under force majeure. If there is a demand, license is permitted to sell PAD items, tea and coffee,” the order stated.