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The Railways recovered over Rs one crore in penalties even as over 59,000 unauthorised vendors were punished during the April-June period, Parliament was informed today. In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha, Minister of State for Railways, Rajen Gohain said during a special drive between April 1-June 30, 2017, to conduct checks in mass contact areas, around Rs 1.18 crore was recovered in penalties, and 307 touts, 59,115 unauthorised vendors, and seven illegal ticketing agencies were prosecuted. "The drive was aimed at curbing malpractices of touting activities, ticketless passengers, and misuse of facilities of e-ticketing," Gohain said. The minister further said the Railways has taken several steps to make the public aware of streamlining of the reservation system and making it more transparent. The steps include restriction on agents for booking of tickets during first 30 minutes of opening of Advance Reservation Period (ARP) booking and Tatkal booking, and imparting information relating to current status of reservation. "The condition of carrying original proof of identity during journey by any one of the passengers booked on the ticket, so as to check transfer of ticket, automatic preparation of reservation charts at least four hours before scheduled departure of train and thereafter booking of available accommodation through Internet as well as through computerised Passenger Reservation System (PRS) counters," Gohain said, listing some of the other measures taken by the Railways. Further, the Railways has also made it mandatory for users to have a one-time password (OTP) for payment of tickets booked online and introduced a time check of 35 seconds for completion of online booking of tickets to avoid misuse through use of scripting software, Gohain said.
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