The Indian Railways (IRCTC) has issued instructions to all the railway zones across the country to ensure the availability of at least 10 POS (point of sale) machines on a single train to allow passengers to make bill payments on food purchased using their debit/credit card. POS machines are handheld devices used to receive electronic payments using debit or credit cards.
In the letter issued on Tuesday, IRCTC says that despite making issuing of bills mandatory for food purchased by passengers, the electronic POS devices were not yet issued and reports on overcharging continued in Indian railways. It also said that this has resulted in "in bad publicity for the IRCTC."
As the ticketing and catering arm of the Indian Railways, IRCTC in its letter said, "Zones are hereby advised to ensure the provision and operation of minimum 10 POS machine in each mail/express trains under their jurisdiction with immediate effect. Licensee must be immediately directed to deploy these machines in all trains run by them."
It has also instructed the zones to carry out inspections in the trains of their jurisdiction to check if the POS devices are being used as directed. A report on the same is expected to be given to IRCTC by June.
Last month, the Indian Railways said that it is providing passengers to choose meals from a pre-loaded menu in 25 trains. The facility of POS devices for food sold by IRCTC was also announced to avoid being overcharged and to make payments easier as they do not need to carry the exact change.
The facility will cover all the zones in India in a phased manner.