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No free travel to police gallantry awardees in Rajdhani, Shatabdi; Railways cites financial reason
New Delhi: Citing "financial and other reasons", the Ministry of Railways has turned down a proposal of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to allow complimentary passes (free travel facility) travel in Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains for President's Police Medal for Gallantry (PPMG) and Police Medal for Gallantry (PMG) awardees and widows of gallantry awards recipients.
The proposal was mooted by Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and was taken up by the MHA with the railways. The Railway Board in its reply did not agree to the proposal citing financial and other reasons.
Earlier, the PMG and PPMG awardees used to get free travel in executive class once a year.
"On the request of CRPF, MHA (Ministry of Home Affairs) had taken up a proposal for extension of the facility to travel in Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains to the recipients of PMG/PPMG with Govt. of India, Ministry of Railway but the same has not been agreed to by the Competent Authority of Railway," reads a recent communication of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) that was circulated for information.
The issue of booking of complimentary pass tickets and extension of the facility to travel in Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains to recipients of PPMG/PMG through the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) ticketing website was taken up by the Director General of CRPF through a slew of communications with the Home Ministry which in turn sent the proposal to the Railway Ministry.
Following this, the Railway Ministry communicated to the IRCTC requesting it to examine the request in consultation with the Centre for Railway Information Systems (CRIS) and Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), and send a detailed proposal on this.
The Railway Board said, ".....the proposal to extend travel by Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains to Police Medal for Gallantry (PMG) /President's Police Medal for Gallantry (PPMG) has been examined several times by this Ministry, but the same has not been agreed to by the Competent Authority for financial and other reasons."
The sources in the police establishment said that granting complimentary tickets to the PPMG and PMG awardees and widows of winner of the gallantry awards in executive class in Rajdhani and Shatabdi Express trains was in practice for several years but later in was withdrawn by the Railway ministry.
According to sources of the Ministry of Railways, the facility was discontinued during COVID time and it cannot be allowed yet due to some financial and other reasons in premium class trains. (ANI)