Railways to monitor big transactions

Indian Railways on Wednesday set up a special cell to monitor high-value transactions at ticketing counters in a bid to tackle attempts at laundering black money. It has made it compulsory for passengers purchasing tickets worth over Rs 50,000 to furnish PAN card details.

Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu said people were queueing up with Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 notes since they were being accepted at railway counters. “A lot of people are giving Rs. 1,000 notes to buy platform tickets that cost Rs 10,” he said here in an interaction with the press.

Large outflow at counters

Railway officials said an “unusually large number of people” were coming with Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes to buy unreserved tickets worth Rs 100 or Rs 200. As a result, there was a high outflow of smaller currencies from railway ticket counters. The Railways witnessed a 40 per cent jump in ticket booking through reservation counters in the first half of the day, officials said. At present, around five lakh tickets on an average are booked daily through reservation counters.

“We are taking updates every two hours to check if there has been any unusual transactions taking place somewhere,” Railway Board Member Traffic Mohammad Jamshed said.

Banks’ help sought

Railways also took a slew of steps for passenger convenience at railway stations and on trains. Authorised caterers of the Indian Railways have been instructed to accept Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 notes till November 11, Mr. Prabhu said.

“We have passed on instructions to all general managers that there should be no inconvenience to any passenger,” Mr. Jamshed said.

In view of the high outflow of smaller currencies, Railways has sought help from banks to manage its booking counters. “The Finance Ministry has issued instructions to allow Railways to procure smaller denominations from RBI’s regional offices from tomorrow,” Mr. Jamshed said.

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Printable version | Nov 28, 2021 12:04:55 AM |

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