In a move to further make Train Reservation Ticketing System passenger friendly, the Ministry of Railways has decided to permit Short Messaging Service (SMS) sent by its PSU, Indian Railways Catering & Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) containing vital details as an instrument on par with the Electronic Reservation Slip (ERS). This has come into effect from 1st February, 2012.
The mandatory features of the authorized SMS are (a) SMS sent by IRCTC/Railways will be considered for this purpose and (b) The SMS would contain all the vital ticket details like PNR, Train Number, Date of Journey, Class, Name & Number of Passengers, Coach & Seat Number and Fare paid. (c) Also if feasible, the SMS will accommodate the names of all passengers booked on the e-ticket, otherwise maximum number of passengers.
Earlier the Railways has decided to treat the screen shot of the e-ticket displayed through laptops/palmtops/mobile phones referred to as virtual reservation Message (VRM) and the Mobile Reservation Message (MRM) for tickets booked on mobile phones combined with valid photo-id in original, as an instrument on par with the Electronic Reservation Slip (ERS), even for tickets booked through the IRCTC website. Now the SMS sent by IRCTC will also be accepted.
The authorized SMS containing all the aforementioned vital details when displayed through laptops/palmtops/mobile phones combined with valid photo-id in original shall be treated as an instrument on par with the ERS.
The ERS/SMS/VRM/MRM along with (i) confirmed/RAC reservation, (ii) Valid ID-proof and (iii) Appearance of name of the passengers on the chart, will be the components of a valid authority to travel.
The list of valid proofs of identity to be produced in original during the course of on-board and off-board checking are as under:
Voter Photo identity card issued by Election Commission of India.
PAN card issued by Income Tax Department
Driving Licence issued by RTO
Photo identity card having serial number issued by Central/State Government.
Student Identity Card with photograph issued by recognized School/College for their students.
Nationalized Bank Passbook with photograph
Credit Cards issued by Banks with laminated photograph
Unique Identification Card “Aadhaar”
The SMS will also have to be displayed during the course of On-board/Off-board checking. If the passenger fails to produce/display this SMS due to any eventuality (loss, discharged mobile/laptop etc.) but has the prescribed proof of identity, a penalty of Rs. 50/- per ticket as applicable to such cases will be levied. The ticket checking staff On board/Off board will give EFT for the same.