Saturday, August 21, 2010

Indian Railways - The PNR Saga

Unlike many developed countries, Indian Railway is the primary source of  travel and transportation in India. This is the preferred mode of traveling by the less privileged, the lower, middle as well as the upper class in India. (Pun unintentional!)   

Due to perpetual rush, rail reservation is the primary focus of any Indian planning to travel long distance. The obsession with train ticket and securing one's berth is an exasperating phenomena.

Though not surprising!

Long distance rail journey could be terribly uncomfortable for those traveling without a reserved seat. You  feel like an out caste and an intruder - unwanted and guilty of trespass. Does not matter if you are among the  privileged  in your town.  But things do not end here. Even short distance passengers or those who have traversed more than half the distance, chase the ticket collector (TT) in a futile effort to get a secured berth. This is to boost their bruised ego or get a last minute nap.

I have been into all this and so have you. He!He!

Agla ishtation aye ga tab dekhien gein? Seat Khali hone do! Arre Sahab!

With thousands of tickets on wait lists, reservations become the first priority with all sorts of connection seeking and what not. Getting an RAC berth is like a windfall.

Kya Mila?
Kya Hua?
Hai koi Jugad?
Quota Mein?
TT se Milo ?
Kuch le lo yaar?
Kya peeche peeche ghoom rahe ho! Kahan na berth khali hogi tab dekhien gien! 

Well this may seem funny but it does not whence you do not have proper reservation on Indian train. The ticket reservation counter may show house full on the very first day of the opening of ticket booking. The tickets have been booked by early birds or online reservations have taken their toll. 

PNR stands for Public Name Record. It is designated by a number printed on the top left of the rail ticket. If you have bought a train ticket your particulars are noted down . This makes you eligible to  travel from one notified station to another  in general bogey, 2nd class, 3AC, 2AC and first AC if you pocket allows. 

It is a standard practice for would be passengers to buy the Indian Railway ticket on waiting list. Next  go online for Pnr status check almost everyday whence the Irctc website is refreshed. Finding Pnr status is like seeking exam results online. Same anxiety, same thrill and if ticket succeeds on the chart Hurray!Pass ho gayein!

Ho Gaya!Yaar!

The status becomes talk of the town - family, cousins, distant relatives, friends, neighbors and whoever who does not mind his own business.  

India is becoming live on the  Internet. Thanks to a search tool that helps check your reservation status using Pnr. In spite of server back log the tool popularity is growing in the same manner as that of blog sites. Rush or no rush the amazing Indian Railway works as it does......all the time!

Yatri Krupaya Dhyan Dein! Appki yatra safal ho!..........Chai Wala!         

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