HYDERABAD: As the festival season inches closer, train tickets from Telangana to various parts of the country for Dasara and Diwali are understandably sold out. However, the tickets for next year’s Sankranti, which is four months away, have also been sold out within two weeks of the reservations opening on September 1.
Reservation counters at Secunderabad, Begumpet, Nampally and Kacheguda have been witnessing long queues of anxious passengers who have been trying to book tickets for week around Jan 14, but to no avail.
The ticket operators at reservation windows are turning back people asking them to book tickets via Tatkal quota a day before they plan to travel, or putting them on waitlists.
Bhaskar Buridi, a tea seller from Hyderabad said, “I tried to book tickets to Srikakulam two weeks after the reservations were opened for Sankranti in January. Within minutes of waiting in the line I was told there are no tickets. I have been put on the waitlist and asked to book a ticket via Tatkal, which is far more expensive,” he said.
Sankranti is a major festival in Telugu states and those staying in Hyderabad visit their native towns in AP to celebrate the festival. With this, SCR witnesses huge demand for tickets particularly for trains going to different parts of AP.
An official from South Central Railway said, “It is very much possible that all the tickets are sold out within the first week itself, as many people book tickets online these days. However, keeping in mind the rush during festive season, we will soon announce special trains.”
Nearly 4.49 lakh unreserved passengers commuted from city on January 11, 12 and 13 this year generating a revenue of Rs 3.99 crore.