In the view of current constraint and challenges that e-ticket booking is facing, R K Tandon, MD, IRCTC on Monday has presented an urgent case to upgrade the capacity of IRCTC website to book 7,200 e-tickets per minute before the end of current fiscal, in front of Railways Ministry. Currently the site can book 2,000 tickets per minute.
The plan claims the expanse of INR 100 cr for the above upgrade. According to the IRCTC officials, the average booking per day on the website has increased from 3.67 lakh in 2012 to 4.15 lakh now. In total there are 31 crore bookings that happens each year for railways, where 37 percent of it are booked online. The site gets overloaded normally at 10 am when the tatkal window opens.
CRIS, the technical arm of railways, will be involved in the upgrading of the IRCTC website.
IRCTC has also proposed the booking through SMS medium to reduce load on the online website. Mobile medium will introduce payments through m-wallet and Inter Bank Mobile Payment System (IMPS).
According to IRCTC, ticket-booking through internet has limited penetration in India currently and booking through SMS will help IRCTC to tap the huge mobile network across the country and reach rural areas.
Former Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal had also announced in his Rail Budget 2013-14 about enhancement of the booking capacity with the deployment of next generation softwares for the site but it had not received much action before this needed meeting.
The meeting that was conducted was attended by Railway Minister CP Joshi, RK Tondon MD IRCTC, Railway Board Chairman Vinay Mittal and CRIS Managing Director Sunil Kumar.