IRCTC seems to hitting rough weather with Indian Railways – First their Menu went off the table, and now it is the e-ticketing business which seems to be at stake.
Remember the sound of empty scissors that barbers create during the impending cut? – It signifies that he is ready to cut your long-grown hairs the very next moment and just seem to be ensuring whether those pair of scissors is operating well enough…
Similarly, after hearing the sound bytes of snatching the catering business from its subsidiary IRCTC, Indian Railways seems to be in no mood to allow the monopoly of IRCTC in the domain of e-ticket booking to the rail passengers as well.
The Indian Railways is now mulling to directly undertake the sale of e-tickets on its own portal , in a yet another setback to the IRCTC. The reason is mismanagement of e-ticketing by IRCTC in form of siphoning off tickets in fictitious names, leading to unavailability of seats to legitimate customers.
More recently, the IRCTC website was also in the news on account of inability of the passengers to book tatkal tickets during the peak morning hours of around 8 AM to 9 AM. Subsequently, after much hue-n-cry, the travel agents were barred from using the reservation site during the first hour to reduce the traffic on the site.
It was alleged that the travel agents cornered most of the tatkal tickets in the initial hour and created an artificial shortage of tickets, thus creating a plot for demanding premiums from the retail passengers for the sale of tatkal berths from them at a cost.
It is estimated that the IRCTC’s business could take a substantial hit on account of loss of opportunities in both catering and e-ticketing business to the railway passengers. During the last financial year, IRCTC earned Rs.122 crore from the sale of e-tickets alone.
In my opinion, there is something fishy going out over there. IRCTC is a subsidiary of Indian Railways. So, why is Indian Railways creating a plot that is not in the best interest of IRCTC? It is like snatching food from right hand and handing it over to left hand. At the end of the day, the food is going to be consumed by none other than your own body.
So, what could be the game in this? Is it anything related to bribe, corruption or personal Politics?