Railways to remove pantry cars from all trains; targets additional revenue of Rs 1,400 crore
New Delhi: The Indian Railways has decided to do away with the pantry cars in long-distance trains and replace them with AC-3 tier coaches.
With the COVID-19 outbreak, special trains are being operated without pantry cars. Hence, the railway has decided to continue this system in post-COVID-19.
By discontinuing panty cars, the railway has estimated to generate an additional revenue of Rs 1,400 crore per annum. At present, over 350 trains are operating with pantry cars. All these pantry cars are functioning on a contract basis. Hence, the railway will not incur any loss from removing pantry cars. However, thousands of contract workers will lose their jobs.
The authority has been planning to supply food prepared at base kitchens of major railway stations to passengers in long-distance trains. It is observed that passengers will not face any issues to get food with the launch of e-catering and food courts at railway stations.
IRCTC is in charge of catering in trains. The railway is also planning to establish base kitchens in more railway stations. Two major railway organisations, the National Federation of India Railwaymen and All India Railwaymen’s Federation,, have welcomed the decision to remove pantry cars.
With the COVID-19 outbreak, the railway has already stopped distributing pillows and blankets in long-distance trains. Instead, passengers have been directed to purchase them from stations. Even after resuming regular services post COVID-19, the railway is unlikely to change this system.