This news has been making headlines on leading news channels and has made to the front pages of many national dailies. After all, the Indian Railway is one of largest rail networks in the world. One can say its the lifeline of our country. With millions and millions travelling on a daily basis, the service needs to be of top quality. With the tatkal reservation, the experimental 3-tier economy class and now the fare hike. But I feel, is the price hike worth ? Is it justified ?
I (as said earlier) am a big foodie, and enjoy eating out. I have always loved the railways food. But realized that the quality and the amount of food has been depleting. Even the country’s best trains – Rajdhani & Shatabdi trains don’t have the quality once they had. The food served in these trains is not filling. There may be a good 3-4 course meal, but the quality has significantly degraded. So, what guarantee do I get that after I pay more, these things will improve ?
The conditions of the train is not great either. The conditions of berths and the coach itself isn’t good. Either the windows are cracked, or the curtains are torn. I won’t be surprised if I see cockroaches or rats running around ! (This is atleast better in Shatabdi and Rajdhani trains). Once again I ask, what guarantee do I get that after I pay more, these things will improve ?
According to me, there are more important issues that the railways need to address. The most important being the online reservation facility. This is something most of you might agree. The website times-out, gives random errors but the tickets are not booked. If you are booking a tatkal ticket, its no less that fighting a war ! I guess that, the railways must spend on getting new servers that can handle more traffic and have high bandwidth so that it can handle the sea of visitors during the peak hours.
Well, if there is no visible improvement, paying more isn’t justified !