Migrant workers do not have to pay for tickets of Shramik Special trains as sending and receiving states are coordinating with each other for the fare of these trains, Railway Board Chairman Vinod Kumar Yadav said on Friday.
"Sending states and receiving states are coordinating with each other for the fare of Shramik Special trains. Migrant labourers do not have to pay for the tickets. Initially, some states were collecting fares from migrants and they were reimbursed by the receiving states. But now there is coordination between sending and receiving states and they are managing the fare of these trains," Mr Yadav said.
He said that the fare of Shramik Special trains is the same as for regular trains.
"Usually special trains fares are higher than of regular trains as they carry passengers from one side only but during these times of COVID-19 pandemic, we have fixed the fare of Shramik Special trains as that of regular trains. We are just collecting 15 per cent of the total cost and bearing 85 per cent of the total cost for running these trains," he said.
He said that in 50 trains there were only 500-1000 passengers. "State governments need to be better prepared while asking for trains," he said.
Indian Railways started Shramik Special trains from May 1 amid the lockdown to send the migrant workers back home.
From May 12, fifteen pairs of special trains are also being operated connecting Delhi to different cities of the country. Railways plans to run 100 pairs of special trains from June 1.
The country is under the fourth phase of coronavirus-induced lockdown which will continue till May 31. The lockdown was first enforced in March to contain the spread of COVID-19.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)