Srinagar, Feb 23: After the resumption of train service, passengers are now paying triple train fare as authorities changed the nomenclature of train service to express/mail.
Passengers from different areas of Kashmir told news agency that train services are no longer cheaper as fare has been hiked three times than it was before.
Sameer Ahmad, a resident of Anantnag, said that after an abrupt charge the minimum passenger charge is now Rs 30, which he said “is a sheer injustice”.
“If someone boards train from Anantnag to Bijbehara, a passenger has to pay Rs 30 besides Rs 20 to reach the station, while bus fare from Anantnag to Bijbehara is just Rs10,” he said.
Altaf Ahmed, a resident of Pulwama, said that people were repeatedly requesting authorities to restore the train because it was cheap, however, nobody will prefer now to board the train after the fare hike.
After remaining closed for around one year due to Covid-19, the train services were resumed in the valley on Monday.
Chief Area Manager Railways Saqib Yousuf told a local news agency that since the trains are now running as mail/express, the fare is being charged accordingly.
Whether fare will be decreased after services will be restored fully, Yousuf said that these are policy issues and such questions can be answered at higher levels only.
Train services in Jammu and Kashmir were suspended on March 19 last year after an outbreak of Covid-19.
Notably, Banihal-Baramulla train services resumed on 11 November 2019 after remaining suspended for around 100 days after the abrogation of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.
Railway officials had said that the railway suffered a loss of around Rs 2 crore for remaining suspended from 05 August 2019 to November 11, 2019 after the revocation of Article 370.