Non-veg food will no longer be served to passengers travelling on current-booking tickets in Vande Bharat trains, A decision to this effect has been taken by the Railway Board.
Railway officials maintain that current tickets are issued till 15 minutes of the departure of the trains, and as a result, the designated service provider has little time to prepare and ensure food as per choice for these last-minute passengers.
“As a result, passengers with current tickets will not have the option to choose veg or non-veg food options now,” a senior official said.
There were frequent complaints from passengers of Vande Bharat Express trains regarding the food and beverages, and the choice available – especially to current ticket holders. This is the reason that after a review by the Railway Board, many food rules have been changed.
In this train, non-veg breakfast and food will be served only to those passengers who have booked tickets in advance while passengers reserving current tickets will only be served vegetarian food.
A letter dated September 21 this regard has been sent by Vikram Singh, executive director of the Railway Board, to general managers of all the Zonal Railways including Prayagraj-headquartered North Central Railway (NCR) and CMD of Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC).
Instructions have also been issued to improve the quality of food in the train.
The Railway Board missive, a copy of which is with HT, has also conveyed that passengers who book confirmed tickets get the option immediately to choose their food and drink. In this, confirmation is sent to the passengers through SMS.
On September 24, Prime Minister Narendra Modi dedicated nine new Vande Bharat Express trains to the nation ahead of the festival season. With this, the total number of these semi-high speed trains in the country have reached 34.
The Vande Bharat Express is India’s first semi-high speed train equipped with world-class passenger amenities. The first train in the series was flagged off between Delhi and Varanasi on February 15, 2019. These India’s first indigenous ‘semi high speed’ trains are manufactured at the Integral Coach Factory (ICF) in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.