Public Interest   Exclusive
Pratibha Patil’s Pune Bungalow: Denying the undeniable

While the Moneylife report on the construction of a post-retirement bungalow for Pratibha Patil in Pune became viral in social media, the President's office came up with a denial which did not address the core issues, but was carried faithfully by the mainstream media

When the Moneylife report on the construction of a post-retirement bungalow for president Pratibha Patil in Pune President Pratibha Patil grabs 2,61,000 sq ft of land meant for soldiers and officers hit the internet running, it became viral in the social media, attracting even more damaging information on the activities of the president and her immediate family in Maharashtra. The mainstream media was slow to react, despite constantly being needled in the social media for ignoring what was public knowledge in Maharashtra. Eventually the president's office came up with a denial which did not address the core issues, but was carried faithfully by the mainstream media. Meanwhile, out there in Pune, the truth is out there to be seen. Can anybody stop the truth from coming out in this day and age of internet? With this report we have pictures of the president’s bungalow under construction.

It doesn’t get higher than the president, in India, and in what appears to be an unwritten law with the mainstream media in Delhi, you don't persist in saying or writing anything about the office and the persons therein which can even remotely be considered to be demoralising or dishonouring. This could be in exchange for the typical quid-pro-quo arrangements that exist in Delhi with such things or born out of traditions going back to a day when feudal and colonial practices were justified. But times have changed.

And nobody brought this out better than Vinita Deshmukh of Pune, a regular columnist for Moneylife, winner of the Chameli Devi Award for journalism and fearless to her own truths to a point where the typical pressures that emanate in and from Delhi, didn’t really impact what is rapidly becoming a report with no previous parallel.



In a situation where corruption in high places is becoming the major issue in India, it is expected that the president and her office take extra special care to stay clear of even the least taint or suspicion. On that count there is still no cogent explanation or response.

Based on more inputs, it remains to be seen whether these questions will be answered or not, either through the RTI route or directly, and much of how the people of this country hold the high office of the president will be decided by that. That is the point that Ms Deshmukh’s report brings out in a straightforward article based on facts which only Moneylife had the guts to carry.

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COMMENTS

K DESAI

6 years ago

I am ashamed to read opiniop of many for the President of India who is due to retire. Especially language used is most upsetting.

Withdrawal from the allotment made under some pretext is unassuming as it is by the Highest Authority of India. She has broken records of all earlier Presidents.

Is President for our protection or procurement?

v s sukumar

6 years ago

Congratulations to all the RTI crusaders, particularly Col.Patil who had the grit to withstand the pressure from all forms who have done a great service not only to the Defense Estates but also to the country by exposing the betrayal of the Oath by the highest dignitary of the country.

MoneyMunch

7 years ago

It is quite obvious that this President,who was furnished under unscrupulous means,whood winking the standard guy,is very little great in order to individual go above others. Except for sure,with regards to happenst become a grabbinng anything and everything over others. You should be justifiable ashamed,but MERA BHARAT MAHAN.

malq

7 years ago

Apparently the lady now wants 85 lakhs for interior decoration work for the palace being built in Pune . . .

http://zeenews.india.com/news/nation/hom...

""In a huge snub to the head of the state President Pratibha Patil, the Home Ministry has turned down her demand for Rs 85 lakhs to do up her new controversy ridden retirement home in Pune.

Union Home Minister, P Chidambaram has reluctantly sanctioned Rs 20 lakhs which is still a record sum in the history of the republic.

Former presidents such as APJ Kalam were given Rs 6 and a half lakhs and earlier presidents such as KR Narayan and Shankar Dayal Sharma sought and got only Rs four and a half lakhs and one and a half lakhs.

This was cited by the Home Ministry to turn down Pratibha Patil's demand.""

REPLY

Pankaj

In Reply to malq 7 years ago

besharmi ki hadd kya hoti ho sakti hai ,,koi inse seekhe.. a new record set by none other then President.

George

7 years ago

Can somebody tell me the president's qualification.Reports tell of her being of great HELP to Sonia ji.
Long live Indian sycophants and corrupt politicians.

malq

7 years ago

And here are details of what the President of India, Mrs. Pratibha Patil, already owns (as per her own declaration).

""The President has a house in Amravati district of Maharashtra worth Rs 39.60 lakh and a 3.82 hectares farm house worth Rs 9.82 lakh. She has inherited 3.57 hectares agricultural land worth Rs 7.81 lakh from her father in Jalgaon and another land worth Rs 20 lakh in Dhule district. Patil had purchased two agricultural plots of 1.19 hectares and 1.49 hectares in Jalgaon district in 1997-98 worth Rs 3.64 lakh and Rs 2.90 lakh respectively.""

http://www.business-standard.com/india/n...

Lt Col Sreedhar GV

7 years ago

This is the price being paid by the Congress party for a rubber stamp President. It looks this President of India is shameless and has no conscience at all. If she has to grab land at all, why Military land? There are so many corrupt Congress Men in Maharastra who should have affered any land else where. Not only she is going to live there, it is her worthless inheritors who will enjoy the property after her& for ever! Is there any way of stopping this attrocity on Soldiers/Sailors/Airmen carried out by the highest authority in the country. Why not Anna Hazare's team or some other Maharastra(Pune) enthusiasts take up this issue quickly? At least obtain a stay order from a local Court on the construction work? I think it is very urgent. Many many thanks to Vinita Deshmukh of Pune.

meDilbert

7 years ago

Main stream media is controlled by Greed and Fear. Greed for govt Awards, Ads, Positions and Fear of CBI, IncomeTax and Defamation Law suite (Times Now ) They no longer have freedom of thought or courage.
Moneylife has been doing good job in keeping investors informed now it is challenging even bigger media houses.

Btw : Is tehelka still being published?

MoneyMunch

7 years ago

Ms. Pratiba Patil has now done sufficient damage by going to 23 nations together with her extended clan. Sonia (not Gandhi) selecting to just supplying second phase to Ms. Pratiba furthermore. Since Ms. Pratiba already viewed most the nations, she would like in order to consider remainder documented in palatial bungalow in Pune

madar

7 years ago

she is a disgusting person who made millions from fraud in cooerative banks and whose son was caught with 1 crore in his car and now she is grabbing land meant for army jawans. How can she be ihead of our nation and why BJP/congress allow it to happen and what is sonia gandhi doing as she is one who forced her on us.

KALYAN MAJUMDAR

7 years ago

It is very evident that the President,who was appointed under unscrupulous means,whood winking the common man,is no great person to rise above others.
Except of course,when it happenst to be grabbinng anything and everything over others.
We should be justifiable ashamed,but MERA BHARAT MAHAN.

malq

7 years ago


Here's Vinita Deshmukh on CNN IBN, where it appears as though the present President is sparring about the amount of land used by others!!

http://ibnlive.in.com/cnnibnvideos/mostv...

deepak

7 years ago

The congress will unleash its dogs and ED, IT, Econ Offence Wing, CBI, at the slightest whiff of wrongdoings by detractors like Kejriwal, Bei, Bhusans, Ramdev. But no action for even serious crimes will be taken against its own rubber stamp members

REPLY

malq

In Reply to deepak 7 years ago

Dear deepak, thank you for writing in, and have faith. Good will prevail over evil.

Please help by taking this cause far and wide, spread this article in regional languages if you can, and make sure that people get to know what is happening.

Thanks. And please wait for more revelations.

Regards/VM

ramarao chillariga

7 years ago

How come the Supreme commander kept quiet when the question of ONE RANK PAY came up and very many went to the extent of surrendering their medals?Now she has no qualms in occupying their land!!C.RAMA RAO.

REPLY

malq

In Reply to ramarao chillariga 7 years ago

Good question, Ramarao ji, and one that deserves to be asked across.

Please do ask the Office of the President's Sectt. And spread the word too. In regional languages, please, if possible.

rgds/VM

Mathai

7 years ago

The article seems to be a complete bogey. The author needs to apologise for misleading the Money Life readers. The Rashtrapati Bhavan clarification says that no land/property has been transferred ownership to the President. She is only being given a place to stay, as all presidents have been given. The place is stated to be a place earlier alloted as official residence of just a Lt. Col. This looks a very resonable situation. How can anyone object to this and blow this out of all proportion.

Roy Scaria has given information on an even more valuable allotment for ex- Pres. Abdul Kalam. Even this is not a transfer of ownership. So even this is OK. Presidents must be treated with respect atleast with an accomodation other people in service have used, for stay during their lifetime.

REPLY

Pankaj

In Reply to Mathai 7 years ago

another intersting piece for u , Ms Mathai

http://www.vigilonline.com/index.php?opt...

malq

In Reply to Mathai 7 years ago

Dear Mathai, thank you for writing in.

The statement from the President's Sectt. neglects to clarify various aspects, eg:-

# total space utilised and under what sort of procedures.
# total covered area all inclusive.
# who bears cost of fresh new building
# who all stay in the accomodation planned.

Occupancy and possession are what it is about in MH, please bear in mind, and take it from there.

Author and publication stand by what they have written. Just because somebody in the past may or may not have committed a wrong does not mean it becomes OK for the future.

rgds/VM

Public Interest   Exclusive
MMRDA holds “public hearings” by giving a six-day notice with four days of holidays! – Part III

These hearings cannot be realistic without even the draft DPR and the preliminary drawings made available for study to the public. Such hearings could be safely termed as a farce

On 5 April 2012, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) announced holding of a public hearing of the Mumbai Metro Master Plan’s (MMMP) Line III alignment on 11 April 2012. The line travels through Colaba-Churchgate-Flora Fountain-VT-Girgaum-Grant Road-Mumbai Central-Mahalaxmi-Worli-Prabhadevi-Dadar-Sitla Devi-Dharavi-BKC-Airport-MIDC-SEEPZ. MMRDA’s R Ramana, additional chief engineer, transportation planning co-ordinated the hearing arrangements and proceedings. Under the chairmanship of SRV Srinivas, additional metropolitan commissioner, MMRDA, the proceedings commenced 40 minutes late and progressed there on. PRK Murthy, chief engineer, transportation & communications division of MMRDA, GR Madan, director mass rapid transit systems, T&C Division, MMRDA, VK Phatak, former chief town & country planning, MMRDA, Dr Vikas Tondwalkar, director environment, MMRDA, and Vishram Patil, chief of rehabilitation and resettlement (R&R), MMRDA were on the dais. At the end, Metropolitan Commissioner Rahul Asthana joined the panel. 

 
MMRDA distributed an information sheet which stated that the fully underground Metro III will be 33.5 km and have 27 conveniently located stations. It would be having interconnectivity with Central Railway at VT (CSTM), with Western Railway at Churchgate, Grant Road and Mumbai Central stations, with Metro I at Marol Naka and Metro II at BKC and with the Monorail at Jacob Circle (Sant Gadge Maharaj Chowk).

The construction would be by Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM), NATM or cut & cover. It did not mention which all stretches would be by TBM and C&C methods but they mentioned during the proceedings that each station of C&C would take about a year and a half to construct.

A typical underground station would be fully air-conditioned, will have a concourse level and the platform level. Entry and exit, the information sheet said, will be by escalators and lifts, but MMRDA did not mention anything about a staircase. It will be designed for eight-coach trains. Station fire and emergency systems will be designed as per international standards (NFPA-130).

The information sheet tries to compare benefits of the Metro Line III with a motorcar trip and suburban rail travel. The comparison is faulty as it mentions a trip from Colaba, Cuffe Parade to Mumbai Airport; the directly connected alignment of the Metro with suburban rail for which there will be two road components of travel. It also mentions the time taken by a motorcar during peak period. Off-peak period travel time by a motorcar will actually take merely 40 minutes while it mentions it as 100 minutes, obviously for peak period travel. Metro travel is mentioned as 50 minutes, which, considering the 1.24 km average spacing of stations, limited permissible acceleration and deceleration, will give an average speed of not more than 30 kmph. This would mean, including dwell time, the airport trip will take not less than 70 minutes. Of course they have not tried to compare travel time with a BRTS, which can have an average speed of 25 to 30 kmph.

While the information sheet envisages the project completion by 2019, it says that ridership will be 13.87 lakh per day by 2025 and 16.99 lakh by 2031. It is silent on ridership in 2019. It does not give the peak period capacity in terms of pphpd (passengers per hour per direction) for the given frequency of an eight-coach train.

MMRDA stated that the Detail Project Report is ready. The advertisement of 5 April 2012 had mentioned that Mr Ramana could be contacted for any additional information. This sounds quite proper but when one sees the short time of six days between 5th and 10th had within that, four days of holidays—Mahavir Jayanti, Good Friday, Saturday and Sunday, leaving only Monday and Tuesday to even approach Mr Ramana, the whole hearing could be termed as farce. Despite this, the number who attended the hearing was reasonably good; the small Hall of the College of Insurance was full.

Issues raised by citizens varied from alignment and wanting the Charkop-Bandra made underground to issues of rehabilitation and Airport stations ‘gifted’ to GVK, the “owners/managers” of Chhattrapati Shivaji International Airport (CSIA) to the issue concerned with Sustainable Urban Mobility.

 
Nitin Killawalla, Architect from Juhu Vile Parle area spearheading the campaign for having underground Metro Line II instead of planned elevated, suggested that Line II and Line III be merged and made underground right from Cuffe Parade, Colaba to Bandra and bifurcate one line continuing to Charkop and the other to Airport and SEEPZ. The Bandra-Mankhurd route could continue as planned. He cited hourly figures of boardings or alightings in the sections Charkop to Bandra to be 1,25,000 and Bandra to Cuffe Parade to be 1,89,000 in 2031. By doing this, he stated that the entire stabling yard or car shed planned in the Aarey “green” zone could be averted, using the Charkop area as planned for Line II.

Isn’t the site of Charkop car shed planned at Lalji Pada having an R&R issue?

The alignment going to SEEPZ via domestic and international airports passes through slums of Chimatpada and Sahar village. Representatives from these areas articulated their apprehensions of R&R. Former corporator from the area, Mr Almeida brought out the fact that GVK was given the land at a very insignificant price and was given development rights for three stations passing through the Airport touching domestic and international terminals and Sahar Road where the cargo section is located. To this, someone from Girgaum said that they too could be allowed to develop their ‘stations’ and commercially exploit them! Apparently the lands taken by MIDC from “bhoomiputras” were not compensated for in terms of R&R. They too wanted to come into the fold of R&R of the project.

Looking into the location of the Airport Stations, it gives the impression that the distance an air passenger will have to traverse will be so high that they may continue with their current mode of cars and taxis. In Delhi, the Airport metro train carries barely a score of people although the frequency is as high as 12 minutes. The reason is that the distance to be traversed to the metro station is long and takes 30 minutes to walk to after deplaning.

The author of this article reiterated the issue of Sustainable Urban Mobility. He briefly put forth the points he had written to the ministry of urban development about six weeks back, which has been covered in these columns “Metro Line 3 – Some questions need to be asked” and “Mumbai Metro Projects Attract Modifications by Centre”.

He said “As far as Mumbai is concerned, there seems to be little attention given to Sustainable Urban Mobility. All projects taken up seem to be of high cost, of long delivery duration and serving minuscule population of the city, while the majority of population suffers due to relief giving projects not being considered at all. Annual fatality figure of nearly 4,000 on overcrowded suburban rail system seems to be an irrelevant issue as much as the density of these commuters.

In a city where 44% walk to work, 3.1% use bicycles and most, including many using personal motor vehicles (only 2.8% use motorcars) use public transport or walk, focus seems to be on this small percent of population using personal motorized transport. Even the Mumbai Metro Master Plan and Mumbai Monorail Master Plan and the grand Garland Road Plan will not address the transportation and quality of life issues adequately or early.”

He recounted the twelve points from his letter to MoUD:
1.    Line 3 has 27 stations in 33.5 km length, giving an average station spacing of 1.24 km.

2.    Six- coach train will require about 135m of station length

3.    It is presumed that access to station platform will be through staircases, escalators and elevators. Their location on the roads would curtail the road pedestrian movements significantly unless the DPR has shown how it will not.

4.    DPR is not available for comments.

5.    At what depth would stations be and if they are at higher levels, then what is the method of construction envisaged?

6.    It is assumed that Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) will be used to bore the tunnel. Where would the TBM inserted into ground to commence boring and how would the excavated material removed and disposed off?

7.    How would the rakes be stabled? Where would the cars shed be located?

8.    What are the methods of providing ventilation and air-conditioning? Power requirement, how will this be met?

9.    What are the disaster mitigation plans and disaster management plans?

10.    There is a seismic faultline passing through the geological structure of Mumbai. How have they addressed this issue?

11.    Unlike the earlier Line 3 alignment which was going through the erstwhile mill areas of the island city that did not have railway line, the new alignment avoids that completely and runs almost parallel to the Western Railway line till Mumbai Central and Mahalaxmi stations. Intention may have been to bring it closer to Malabar Hill and Cumballa Hill where personal motorcar usage is very high. However, it is highly unlikely that personal motorcar users will use the Metro if the stations are not passing very close to their dwellings. The route needs to be reviewed from an overall perspective of reducing personal motorcar usage.

12.    There is no mention of how stations will be fed with commuters or how they will be dispersed. Whether they propose to provide for parking cars and if so, the very purpose of providing public transport through Metro gets defeated if one provides these car parks. Firstly these will be totally inadequate, forcing people to either park on road sides or use cars for full distances.

Of all these points, SRV Srinivas responded to the point on Disaster Management aspects in very general terms but did not mention what mitigation measures were being adopted. Mr Madan mentioned that they were going to adopt designs for eight-coach train as against six-coach they had been mentioning earlier. This would mean that the station length will be 180 m.

The positive part was that they all acknowledged the fact that the Metro Rail will take enormous time and nodded to the comment that Sustainable Urban Mobility must get priority in the form of making infrastructure for walking, cycling and the BRTS. How far the affirmative nod will take matters to reality is anybody’s guess.

(Sudhir Badami is a civil engineer and transportation analyst. He is on Government of Maharashtra’s Steering Committee on BRTS for Mumbai and Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority’s Technical Advisory Committee on BRTS for Mumbai. He is also member of Research & MIS Committee of Unified Mumbai Metropolitan Transport Authority. He was member of Bombay High Court appointed erstwhile Road Monitoring Committee (2006-07). While he has been an active campaigner against Noise for more than a decade, he is a strong believer in functioning democracy. He can be contacted on email at [email protected]
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COMMENTS

DrSharmila Rao PN

7 years ago

Out of curiosity, what if these discussions took place on a public forum like doordarshan, and invited people to give their opinion?

Public Interest   Exclusive
Railways plan to stop selling ticket coupons from next year

Without popularising any easy-to-use and failure-safe alternative, the Railways are phasing out coupon booklets that can be purchased from ticket windows and validated by punching at starting station across the Mumbai suburban rail network

To avoid the long rush at the railway ticket counters, Mumbaikars have an easy option of using coupon vending machines (CVMs). Unfortunately, this would now be a thing of past. From March 2013, these coupons will not be available as the Railway board has decided to phase out them from circulation. This move is aimed to popularise the Railways’ own automatic ticket vending machines (ATVM) where a smart card (issued by the Railways) is used for buying tickets and season passes. However, passengers association are disappointed with the announcement. Just recently, the Railways also stopped selling coupons directly and instead asked commuters to buy it by standing in the queue, similar to other ticket buyers.

Vidyadhar Malegaokar, chief public relation officer, Central Railway, told Moneylife that, “It was an old notification from the railway ministry. We had requested them for an extension. Accordingly, the CVMs will be phased out by March 2013. Already ATVMs are been installed across stations. Once we have alternative, CVMs will be removed. At present, around 15% of ticket sales, on average, are coming through ATVMs.”
 
At present, across railway stations of Mumbai, there are 350 CVMs and 250 ATVMs on the Central Railway and 230 CVMs and 175 ATVMs on the Western Railway stations. On the Central Railway network, there are about 428 ticket booking windows that sell around 10 lakh tickets every day.

However, passenger associations have criticized the move calling it a deliberate attempt to kill the popular CVM scheme. “CVMs are easy to operate and popular among commuters. Earlier the railways allowed passengers to buy coupons without standing in the queue. But according to a circular, from 1st April, people have to stand in queue to buy coupons. Obviously, there is no rationale here. Commuters will migrate to ATVMs, which in reality is complicated to use. ATVMs just mean the railways will get full payment in advance,” said Madhu Kotian, president, Mumbai Rail Pravasi Sangh.
 
Mr Kotian adds that, “Unlike CVMs where only the coupon had to be punched, while using an ATVM a passenger has to give five commands. People who cannot read the instructions would not be able to use this; unlike the CVMs. Plus many of these expensive machines are non-functional. Instead they should have increased the number of CVMs. At the end only passenger will have to suffer.”

For using the ATVMs, the commuter needs to buy a smart card and then top it up or refill (similar to adding talk time in mobile) in multiples of Rs50. The smart card carries a deposit of Rs50, which means this money would be locked and remain with the Railways and you cannot use it for buying tickets. For buying tickets through the ATVMs, you need to refill it with minimum Rs50. The Railways offer a 5% discount on every refill, which means if you loaded the card with Rs100, then the refilled amount would be Rs105.

For using ATVMs, the commuter has to place his smart card on the sensor screen, select language (Marathi, Hindi or English), select appropriate zone, starting and destination stations, add number of adults and children and then give the print command.
 
Subhash Gupta, president, Yatri Sangh Mumbai, seconds the view. “There is a huge popularity of CVMs among the passengers. The reason behind long queues is the less number of ticket counters. Phasing out coupons will add to the problem. The Mumbai Division (railway) is already short of staff. So there is no hope for any additional ticket counter or window at any station. CVMs are easier to use as compared ATVMs, which can be used by people who can read or do any ATM transaction. We will demand with the railway board to not put an end to CVMs.”

He adds that, “Unless there is dedicated staff to resolve the technical problems, as often these machine breakdown, passengers won’t have any relief. These factors have to be considered by the Railways.”

At present, there are some facilitators (mostly Railway employees) at a few ATVMs who sell tickets to commuters by using their smart card. They also help commuters in buying tickets through these machines. However, their number is limited and they are not available at every station or ATVM.

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COMMENTS

Ratanlal Purohit

6 years ago

Dear Sudhir
Thank you
I take it that you arr trying to responding to my questions but have just shot at the tangent.
I GIVE 100 AND GET 52 AFTER DEDUCTING 50. WHY THIS IS SO COMPLICATED. DOUBLE TROUBLE. SIMPLE MATHS RATHER ARITHMATIC.
LET RAILWAY RESPOND. WHY THIS KOLAVERI DI.
THANK YOU FOR INFORMING ONE MORE VARIANT OF PAYMENT OPTION.
ANYONE WHO KNOWS OPERATIONS RESEARCH AND QUEUEING THEORY WILL AGREE THAT 20/30 SECOND WILL ONLY ADD TO THE PRESENT PROBLEM. AT THE COUNTER IT TAKES 5/10 SECONDS AND THERE ARE BIG QUEUES.
SUBMITTED MOST HUMBLY WITH A REQUEST TO ADDRESS THE CENTRAL POINT.
HOPE RAILWAYS APPOINT AN EXPERT COMMITY WITH CONSUMER FOCUS TO RETHINK. WHAT IS WRONG IN ALTERNATIVE SUGGESTED. LET THEM GO ABROAD TO STUDY.
Regards
RB Purohit

D Pereira

6 years ago

Hi,
Today (28th May), three out of three Smart Card Ticket Vending Machines and one out of two CVMs are not working at Ambernath Station.
I brought my daughter to mumbai from ambernath, and had to purchase a ticket for her. I have a season ticket.
This is very frustrating.
Regards,
D Pereira

Sudhir Badami

6 years ago

There is a common card which is being launched by Ministry of Urban Development for transport sector, usable anywhere. It was 'launched in Dec 2011 at the Urban Mobility Conference. It is a smart card / debit card.
5% incentive is correct. If you refill with Rs 100, your ATVM card gets Rs 105/-. Since they operate with Rs 1 as least count, it is natural that Rs 50 refill will provide Rs 52. If it were loaded with Rs 53, people will load Rs 50 more frequently, defeating the purpose of queuing up at the window for a refill.
The Smart card is easier to carry than a booklet. I have used both. It is human nature not to change for better convenience because we fear inconvenience.
Booklets can become thriving business for fraudsters, ATVM cards, money is paid to railway account immediately as you do the refill.
Buying a smart card for Rs 20 that lasts as long as you take basic care in handling and over one year, for a purchase of tickets of value Rs 500, it is as little as 4%, less than 5% incentive given while doing a refill. Rs 500 expense on rail travel in one year is quite small.

Ratanlal Purohit

6 years ago

What is Railway up to?
Its monopoly. There is no competition. Can we take it to competition law? No why not. Will Supreme Court admit a class Action.

We dont get any answer for their arbitrary actions. The Deposit. Why? It is our money. RAILWAYS SHOULD GIVE OR TAKE SECURITY. A BANKER WILL BE HAPPY IF ALLOWED SUCH.
AND WHERE IS 5%. ITS ONLY 2 Rs YOU GET. 50 IS DEDUCTED. YOU GET 52. CAN WE TAKE THEM TO ASCI FOR WROND AND MISLEADING ADVERTISEMENT. WILL CONSUMER COURT TAKE IT UP. A PLAIN DAYLIGHTROBBERY.
AND WHERE IS CONSUMER CONVENIENCE IN THE NEW SYSTEM. FIRST BUY SMART RAILWAY CARD. PAY EXTRA MONEY. THEN KEEP IT ALWAYS IN YOUR WALLET IN ADDITION TO YOUR ATM CARD. THEN TAKE A TRAINING PROGRAM TO LEARN HOW TO USE IT. AND LOSE IF YOU MAKE A MISTAKE. LOSE YOUR COOL AT THE COST OF RAILWAY MISTAKE OF BUYING THESE MACHINES. ANY TATRA TYPE SCAM FOR SOME ONE TO MAKE HAY TILL SUN SHINES.
WHY NOT SIMPLY VALIDATE BANK ATMS THAT ARE ALREADY THERE.
WILL ML TAKE THIS UP. WILL CONSUMER NGOs TAKE IT UP. WILL SOME ADVOCATES DO SOME PUBLIC SERVICE AS CSR. I WONDER.

arun adalja

7 years ago

railways are getting money in advance and coupens are easy and very useful for mumbai suburban trains and what is the reason for stopping it?go to dadar,thane vt and mumbai central it will take minimum 30 minutes to get ticket.

REPLY

Sudhir Badami

In Reply to arun adalja 7 years ago

Looks like you have not read the first two comments.

arun adalja

In Reply to Sudhir Badami 7 years ago

these are my views and what other writes i am least bothered anyway i do not want to argue.

Sudhir Badami

In Reply to arun adalja 7 years ago

These two postings merely gave benefits of smart card. When CVMs were introduced, many may have objected to it but more found its benefits.
Briefest answer for ATVM usefulness is, you carry a card, can fill it with min Rs 20, select your destination, number of adults, number of children and ask for a print out. The operation takes 20 to 25 seconds. It also gives platform tickets and I need to confirm, monthly & quarterly pass also.
This posting is not to argue but to enable you to know. Thereafter it is for you to decide whether to hold to your views or not.

DrSharmila Rao PN

7 years ago

I don't really know as I don't use railways except to go home for a holiday.
But it sounds a great idea.
At least during our month's stay at Bangkok the phone and train cards available at 7/11 shops were great.

Bosco

7 years ago

I totally agree with the article. I have been using only Ticket Coupons for several years now. In my expereince, it takes about 10 seconds to punch 3-4 coupons, whereas my friends who use the smart card take much more time for the same. And whereas it is possible for 2-3 people to share a coupon validating machine at one time during peak hours (each one punching 1 ticket sequentially to save time), only 1 smart card user can use his machine at any one time. I would suggest to the railways to keep the coupons scheme, even if they make people stand in line to get the booklets.

REPLY

malq

In Reply to Bosco 7 years ago

Please come to Delhi and see the simple smart card that Delhi Metro uses. Deposit cost 50/-, discount 10% on travel, available as credit card shaped or as key chain, in both cases just tap and keep moving, often you don't even break stride as you go through the turnstile. Very soon we are looking at the same card being used for buses, parking lot and more.

The benefits in terms of preventing loss of revenue are the main issue.

Best/VM

Bosco

In Reply to malq 7 years ago

Apparently then Delhi uses a different system from Mumbai alltogether. In fact based on your description, it looks like you'll have a similar system to the London Metro, which i have used on stints abroad & which worked very very well. In which case my arguments do not apply to you'll at all.But here in Mumbai we have a rather different system. At the moment , in Mumbai at least, we definitely do need the Ticket Coupons as a supplement to regular tickets & smart cards.

malq

In Reply to Bosco 7 years ago

Matter of fact, the smart card system used in Delhi is now being bench-marked globally for not just the passenger/commuter transaction but the complete cycle. AND the savings are well above the 10% discounted to the pax on multiple heads put together.

What sort of smart card do you have in Mumbai, can you please describe it?

Here in Delhi, we either tap the sensor or lay the smart card flat on the sensor (works even when the smart card is inside a wallet, for example). As I said, after a few times, you can swing past without breaking stride because the turnstile is about one step ahead.

Hope that helps. Maybe you need to work on your local authorities and tell them to look at Delhi Metro?

Sudhir Badami

7 years ago

Coupons for CVMs are purchasable in booklets of Rs 30 and Rs 50. They get damp easily due to perspiration, unless the commuter keeps it in a plastic case. Slightest dampness causes the coupon to lose its stiffness and becomes difficult to insert to get it validated. Secondly, every coupon needs to be validated. While it may take about 20 seconds for four coupon validation, multiple 'tickets' would take that much more time. Also, return journey will require similar time.

As for ATVM, it takes 25 seconds for a transaction including multiple tickets and return tickets for the same destination. Return ticket purchased is valid like any return ticket - valid till the mid night of next day or in case of Saturday, till midnight of following Monday. The smart card refill was in multiples of Rs 50 until recently when they have made minimum refill amount as Rs 20. Until recently, the CVTM has not been giving any problems.

The monthly pass is not transferable as it has to be accompanied with a photo identity.

Perhaps the display to select the destination could be improved upon but most people would learn quickly even at this design. The small fraction who do not know or need to know the Mumbai Rail system can always go to the ticket counter where the queue would not be long if most people have ATVM smart card.

People purchasing CVM Coupons need not be privileged to beat the queue as they are spending time in queue every once in a while. As regards First Class traveler, the queue priority is anyway being accorded, to save time of a high end ticket purchaser. Refilling smart card does not receive such privileges anyway.

On the whole, the smart card is most useful, even better than buying ticket at the counter.

malq

7 years ago

Smart card based travel systems have been in use in Delhi for almost a decade now, and the benefits are multiple, for both user as well as railways.

1) The discount (which, btw is 10% in Delhi) is a boon to commuters.

2) Coupons can easily be counterfeited, while smart cards counterfeiting while possible, gets caught at the sensros.

3) Let us not underestimate the capabilities of all classes of people to adapt to this form of ticketing.

4) Adding value to the smart cards can be done onsite, online, at ATMs and vending machines. These can also be linked to parking charges.

All in all, smart cards reduce revenue leakage, and the sooner they are put in position, the better. Also, the tendency of mis-using "seasons tickets" for multiple journeys in the same day/date by people will be eliminated.

You pay for the travel you undertake.

The biggest benefit is that with a smart card, travel across the WR/CR and soon to come Mumbai Metro will become unified, hopefully - and no more of that racket of catching WR ticket people on CR and vice versa at Dadar WR/CR.

With smart cards, my submission is that a lot of rackets will end on Mumbai's suburban "local" train network, especially all sorts of undesirables hanging around on the platforms. The benefits far outweigh everything else.

Humbly submitted.

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