Nagpur: Scores of passengers who had booked their tickets cashless and had to cancel journey for one reason or another, have “virtually” been left “cashless” and fuming, too. Since railways have not initiated effective measures on refund of cancelled tickets, the passengers seem to have suffering a mental trauma. The refund can take a minimum of three months and maximum twelve months as thousands of cases of cashless ticket cancellation are pending with Mumbai Headquarters. Even though cashless system is good one after demonetization, the dismal arrangement of refund has hit the passengers hard.
A passenger, a retired employee, was told to wait for an indefinite period for refund. This passenger had booked a ticket on January 17 on Nagpur-Mumbai Duronto Express from Bhandara Road to Kalyan. Similarly he had booked a return ticket on Mumbai-Nagpur for travel on January 22. Both the tickets were booked cashless from Ajni Reservation Centre. For a reason, he had to cancel the tickets and therefore went to Ajni Centre. However, the counter man raised his hands and told the senior citizen to Nagpur Railway Station since the facility was not available with Ajni Centre. The frail passenger struggled to reach Nagpur Station and stood in queue at counter number 8. It took one hour to reach at counter window.
The counter man handed over two forms to this passenger for cancellation of tickets. The Railway employee cancelled the tickets. He kept one form with him and the other form with cancelled ticket and other details was handed over to this aged passenger. The passenger was told to take the form to the General Centre near Main Gate. The man at the centre told the senior passenger to fill up TDR (Ticket Deposit Receipt) form in duplicate. The duplicate form was kept by the man with himself and the original was handed over to the aged passenger. Shockingly, the centre man advised the passenger to send the form to Mumbai at his own expense.
According to a railway official, every person who has cancelled the ticket bought across the counter has to file ticket deposit receipt (TDR) to process the payment. If such tickets are worth more than Rs 10,000, the TDR will be sent to the Mumbai office of the Central Railways where the reasons mentioned for the cancellation will be scrutinised. Thereafter, the railways will decide whether to process the payment. The payment will be made online, by cheque or even e-transfer from account to account only. There is no chance that money will be given in cash in any case, the officer said. “Generally, the TDR does not go to the Mumbai office unless there are any disputes over cancellation or refund. In this case, the railways has decided to handle the matter through its Mumbai office. The procedure is lengthy and it can take more than 30 days from the day of initiating the process,” he added.