Thursday, 16 February 2017

Man finds out how Indian Railways staff overcharge for your meals

Many of us have travelled in trains and have ordered food. But have we ever thought that we are paying almost double the money for the food than it actually costs? India Today has published a retired IAS officer's account on how meals in our trains are overpriced by almost 100 per cent. A vegetarian meal that costs Rs 50 is sold for Rs 90 and the non-vegetarian meal is sold at Rs 100 when it originally costs Rs 55. Read it:

Indian Railways is one of the world's largest railway networks with more than 12,000 trains running across the nation everyday.

Scamming with whatever ways we can, is nothing new. According to a Facebook post, a man put out an account of a retired IAS officer who was travelling from Visakhapatnam to Howrah in Yesvantpur-Howrah Express.

According to the post, a vegetarian meal was sold to the retired IAS officer Shivendra K Sinha by a waiter at Rs 90. Sensing something wrong, Sinha figured out that he was buying his meal for a price more than what IRCTC is selling at.

The rate card confirmed that the vegetarian meal costs Rs 30 (excluding taxes) and non-vegetarian meal is priced at Rs 35 (excluding taxes).

It became a scam when the pantry car officials asked for a price much higher than what IRCTC has decided. The veg meal that was supposed to be sold at Rs 50 was sold at Rs 90 and the non-veg meal that was supposed to cost Rs 55 was sold at Rs 100.

Regardless of what the waiter charged Sinha, he paid the official price but waiter demanded for the price the pantry car officials unofficially fixed.

Sinha asked for the rate card which the waiter failed to provide. After the discrepancy was highlighted, the waiter agreed upon taking Rs 50 instead of Rs 90 further telling Sinha to not tell anybody about this.

A furious Sinha then did not sit this one out and rushed towards the pantry car to have a word with pantry in-charge.

He filed a complaint with the in-charge and in return, he was to get a copy of the complaint. He filed the complaint saying that he was charged more for his meal but to his surprise, the in-charge wrote, "taken only Rs 50 from customer Bill No XXX and this customer writes complaint every time he travels."

Here's the full post he posted on Facebook:


Shivendra K. Sinha IAS Ret'd

Last week i was travelling from Visakhapatnam to Howrah in Yesvantpur-Howrah Express. Ordered Veg. meal from the pantry car, as per waiter it was Rs.90/- only.

I have always in mind that these people are charging very high for the meals but never took it seriously. But this time i determined to enquire about it.

Googled about the rate card and menu, found this website,

IRCTC Help: IRCTC Latest Food Menu Rates

I was shocked when I saw the rates -

Veg meals which pantry car person was selling at Rs 90 was priced only Rs 50/-

Non-Veg meals pantry car rate was priced Rs 100 is only Rs 55/-

Two more options are also available as Standard Thali Meals- Veg and Non-Veg atRs 35 and Rs 40.
After meals , i handed over Rs 50 to the waiter, but he was demanding 90.

I asked him about the RATE CARD, he refused to have any such thing.

Shown him the above website and rates, he was like Rs. 50 will be ok but DON’T TELL ANYONE.

I was so furious, travelled all the way from 13th coach to 1st coach to the pantry car.

And on my way, informed co-passengers who were taking the meals from pantry about this scam.

Met the Pantry-In-charge. Enquired about this. he was also telling the same story, rate cards are missing right now but will shortly get the new one.

About the Jacked price of meal he was mum. Lodge a complaint in his Complaint register , which he handed over to me after half an hour.

Initially he was pleading not to write the complaint but after writing the complaint, he was like nobody will see this , it will go into dustbin that’s it.

To my surprise, against my complaint (he is obliged to give reason in writing - triplet complaint copies - one has to handed over to customer) he wrote “taken only Rs 50 from customer Bill No XXX and this customer writes complaint every time he travels. “

The same situation is in almost every train, pantry car meals price are jacked up as no one question them, no one ask about the rate card.

As per one of the estimate, every day around 25 million passenger travel from Indian Railways , if only 0.5% of these passengers takes either lunch or dinner from pantry cars , even extra rupees 30 on each plate will make these people rich by Rs 37,500,000.

Calculate for yourself for 100% passengers complaining.

Or just multiply Rs 37,500,000 by 200 and again by 365...


Please do insist for Bill every time you ordered any food from a Railway pantry car.

Please do try to forward this to all, as so many depend on Rail travel & can't afford Air travel.

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