Starting off 2018 on an innovative note, the Indian Railways, in a bid to encourage cashless transactions, is all set to provide passengers with their very own SBI Debit Card.
This venture, by the Railways, the State Bank of India, and the Indian Railways Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), provides passengers with a debit card, from the country’s biggest lender.
A Ministry of Railways official informed the Financial Express that, “The Railway Debit Card can be used for any transaction, but when passengers buy rail tickets, it will be free of charges and will make them eligible for loyalty plans.”
He also said that there would be a monthly lottery draw to give 100% cash-back to ten lucky passengers
Tickets are the primary source of revenue for the Railways and post the demonetisation of specified currencies in November 2016; the railways had waived fees for online ticketing. Now, even as IRCTC doesn’t charge anything for online booking, it is bearing the cost of the service charges of the banks.
Railway Minister Piyush Goyal has instructed officials to find ways to reduce the IRCTC’s burden caused by bank charges.
The monthly lottery draw will begin in January and will allow ten lucky passengers to get the entire booking amount back if the booking has been made online. The passengers will be chosen from the preceding month.
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“Ten lucky passengers, who have purchased e-tickets using their Aadhar number and have travelled during December, will be selected through a lottery and the money they have spent on tickets, will be refunded,” the official quoted above informed the Financial Express.