Consumer organisations, passengers in Coimbatore upset over proposal to raise age limit for train fare concession

Several consumer bodies and passengers are irked over a Parliament standing committee suggestion that the Railways increase the age ceiling from 60 to 70 years for fare concession. The panel recommended restoring the concession that was cancelled pre-pandemic in 2020.

Citizen’s Voice Coimbatore, a consumer and environment body, in its letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, “The proposed changes are not fair. The eligibility has been re-fixed at 70 years instead of the earlier 58 years for women and 60 years for men. Further, the eligibility class will be limited to the general and sleeper classes. Rarely, senior citizens aged 70 years and above travel to visit their family or for medical treatment purposes.”.

P Rajendran (62), a retired businessman from Mettupalayam, said the department had raised the age limit to cut costs. “The age limit must be reverted to 60 for both men and women, considering the physical limitations.”

K. Kathirmathiyon, secretary, Coimbatore Consumer Cause, said, “The concession can be extended to those who cannot afford the tickets, particularly those who worked or are working in the unorganised sector. Based on their income, several pension receivers, government employees can be exempted.”

Director of Kongu Railway Development Council K.S Ramakrishnan said, “Senior citizens below poverty line can be given free travel. For the economically stable people, fare concession can be given 10 to 12 times a year.”

Citizen’s Voice said, “The individuals may also be classified into multiple slabs so that enhanced fare can be collected from the upper class.”

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Printable version | Aug 13, 2022 5:38:33 pm |