Central Railway launches operation fortress, collects Rs 18.8 crore in fines
Operation Fortress, a drive conducted by the Central Railway authorities to nab ticketless commuters, has paid off
With the influx of passengers, CR authorities have become more vigilant in keeping track of passengers who break the rules, and so far, they have been successful in their mission. The Railways has managed to collect Rs 18.8 crore in fines this year, up from Rs 15.14 crore last year.
As per the statistics provided by the authorities, last year CR had witnessed 4,14,493 cases of ticketless travelling from April 1- December 9, 2012. This year the figure has gone to 4, 89,682 for the same period. These cases involve improper tickets (travelling beyond the designated station mentioned on the ticket), travelling in the first-class compartment with a second-class ticket, and travelling with heavy luggage in the non-luggage compartments.
“We have made efforts and planned strategies in such a manner that not a single passenger can escape without a ticket from that particular station. We deploy maximum manpower at one particular station and at every entry and exit point. This makes the drive successful and we have been able to register more cases,” said a senior CR official.
Recently, travelling ticket examiner (TTE) M M Shinde (44) was rewarded for collecting the highest amount of fines from illegal travellers in local trains and long-distance trains, (‘TTE collects record Rs 1.01 cr in 11 months’, December 7). He collected a staggering amount of Rs 1.01 crore.
Shinde who checks the tickets of outstation as well as local train passengers had completed 14 hours of duty instead of the usual 10 hours. During the festive season of Diwali, he had noticed commuters taking advantage of the rush, feeling that they could get away without purchasing a ticket. Shinde wanted to change this attitude and worked overtime to get the job done.
In the drive conducted by CR in the month of October, a penalty of Rs 15 lakh was collected in just two days. Around 4,414 cases of ticketless travelling and travelling in first-class compartments with an improper ticket were registered. The drive was conducted in Thane, Dadar, Kalyan and Ghatkopar. During these drives, the CR employs its entire ticketing as well as non-ticketing staff of around 650 people to keep a watch.
A K Jain, senior PRO, CR, said, “These drives are conducted in order to bring awareness among commuters that if they do travel without tickets they will be fined, we have taken the issue of ticket less travelling very seriously and hope that the commuters will be encouraged to purchase a ticket when they enter the station.”