CHENNAI: On boxing day, the Railways played Santa for 139 distraught passengers, who missed the Tamil Nadu Express on Christmas in anticipation of a five-hour delay. They were sent by the Duronto Express early on Friday.
Having reserved tickets on Tamil Nadu Express, the 139 passengers were in for a shock when they realised that the train had departed according to schedule at 10 PM.
The confusion arose as trains to and from Delhi have been delayed for the past few days because of fog in northern states. Trains like Grand Trunk Express, departing at 7.15 pm and the Tamil Nadu Express have been regularly delayed.
However, on Thursday, only the Grand Trunk express was delayed. Those having a ticket on the TN express reached in the dead of the night at 1-2 AM to discover that their train had left. “It is unclear as to how out of 1,500-2,000 passengers on the train, 139 were misguided. Many of them had e-tickets. An official enquiry has been launched into this,” said a Southern Railway official. If the error is on part of the Railways system, like wrong message sent via the 139 IVRS service, then the ticket fare would be refunded, the official added.
However, to the relief of the distraught passengers the Duronto Express on Friday at 6.40 am was running empty. “While some were adjusted under the Emergency Quota (EQ), some bought tatkal tickets. All of them were able to get seats on the Duronto,” the official added.