CHENNAI: Rail passengers and several politicians in Tamil Nadu have urged the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) and the Indian Railways to introduce a Tamil language option for the passengers within the State to receive text alerts in their language while booking tickets.
At present, the passengers can choose whether to receive text alerts regarding bookings in English or Hindi. On October 2, L Muthulakshmi booked a ticket for Madurai to Chennai journey, and received all alerts in Hindi.
“I neither understand Hindi or English. There should be an option to receive text alerts in Tamil,” she demanded. Subsequently, DMK MPs Kanimozhi and Thamizhachi Thangapandian, and PMK founder S Ramadoss condemned the Indian Railways for allegedly imposing Hindi in the State.
Thangapandian urged the railways to upgrade the system to send text alerts in local languages of the respective States. Kanimozhi pointed out that most people in the State could not read Hindi, and she also warned of serious consequences if such incidents repeated.
PMK founder Dr S Ramadoss, whose party is an ally of the ruling BJP at the Centre, alleged that SMSes for e- tickets in Tamil Nadu are "being sent in Hindi for the last two days."
"This is a planned imposition of Hindi on non-Hindi speaking people. The Railways should stop this," he said in a tweet.
He demanded action against those behind this and urged that all Central government related announcements in Tamil Nadu must be released only in Tamil and English.
Southern Railway officials said that while the matter does not come under their purview, it has, however, been 'flagged' with IRCTC, the authorised e-ticketing agency.
Clarifying on the issue, Southern Railway said that the passenger had chosen ‘Hindi’ language option while registering in IRCTC portal on September 30. “She received system generated messages in Hindi as the passenger’s preferred language was indicated as Hindi,” it added.
(With PTI inputs)