After linkages of Aadhaar cards with LPG service, passport service, etc., the Government has now shifted its focus to railway ticketing and booking. The Indian Railways has mandated Aadhaar card for booking train tickets throughout the country. Users will now have to link their Aadhaar cards to the IRCTC.
Travellers who do not hold a valid Aadhaar card till date will now have to compulsorily apply for it to book reserved as well as unreserved tickets.
The new regulations will come into effect from December 2016.
This move will enable the Railways to rule out frauds. At present, there are several instances of fraud reported, mostly regarding passengers misusing age concessions or other noted concessions which they are not eligible for. With the Aadhaar-linking, these pain points will be eliminated.
Also, till now, only those railway passengers who booked their tickets online, could avail of travel insurance. Passengers who booked their railway tickets offline as well as the ones travelling with unreserved tickets were not eligible for this facility.
With Aadhaar-linking, the Indian Railways has promised to provide travel insurance benefits to all railway passengers. The Indian Railways has launched the insurance facility from 1st September 1, 2016 and, thus far a total of 27 Lakh passengers have availed this facility.
The Indian Railways will make use of Aadhaar details to make a centralised database of passengers and disburse insurance and concession benefits. Till date, the government claims that more than 90% of the population have Aadhaar card. The linking of the Aadhaar database with the IRCTC is already underway and is expected to be completed soon
As per government data the present insurance charge which is 92 paise per booking, will be reduced to 10 paise-50 paisa after the linkage.