How can IRCTC be so shortsighted?

I was very happy when Indian Railways announced that I don’t have to print my e-tickets and that the sms from IRCTC will be considered valid by the ticket checkers. ”

Great initiative to reduce the cutting of trees and a step forward in adapting technology” so I thought. So far, great!

And then I made a booking and got the sms. I thought there should be some mistake because it simply said “PNR 4235020957, FARE 268, IRCTC CHRG 10, PG CHRG AS APPLICABLE”

I was wondering if there is going to be more text and waited for eternity. It finally dawned on me that there is going to be nothing further than this. And I was devastated!

No passenger name, no train name or number & no coach number, seat or berth details.

Worse, what do i care about IRCTC Charge or PG (which btw is Payment Gateway) charge as applicable?

And the biggest joke of all is that all this stupid content (sans the pnr number) came to only 97 characters which meant that 63 more was left and wasted.

I am still wondering about the original objective!!

I still have to print my e ticket to have my coach and seat details, train name and number and time of departure.

And seeing this as an alternative to printing, I am zapped!!



  1. narsi said,

    January 26, 2012 at 6:01 am

    Seriously. I am amazed that they thought to include the line, “PG charges as applicable” without including the train no., time of departure, coach and berth nos. Phew, that’s Public sector functioning for you !!

    • badrirag said,

      February 23, 2012 at 2:12 am


      I wouldn’t put down it as a “public sector functioning” but as something specific to Railways and just in this context. I think it is the work of some overzealous person in the system who is perhaps not using the sms himself and is not aware of the shortcomings.

      LIC, also a public sector enterprise, is leveraging technology to really make a difference to its customers through its website, value-added services, sms notifications on the premium etc and they are doing a great work.


      PS: I still get the irctc sms without the train details. Looks like the people concerned are still blissfully unaware of their faux pas

  2. June 8, 2012 at 12:53 am

    […] November 2011, I had written a post on the quality of information in the sms sent by IRCTC that can be considered as proof of […]

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