The crowded transportations during the Pongal holidays had rained lakhs on the Indian Railways as the Southern Railways, which is one of the important zones in India, had collected Rs 9 lakh as fine from the travelers who traveled without possessing the tickets.
The Southern Railways had fined more than 2000 commuters who were identified traveling without the tickets on the Pongal eve of January 14th. The reports have stated that the railway authorities had installed extensive inspections in the suburban trains in Chennai and the long-distance trains.
While inspecting the travelers on the Pongal eve, the authorities had penalized about 2000 people for not having the valid and authorized tickets and collected Rs 8.89 lakh as fine in total and the reports have revealed that the travelers of the suburban trains accounted for the highest number of penalties followed by the people who reportedly traveled in the reserved compartments with unreserved tickets in the long-route trains and the Southern Railways had ought to collect the fines despite operating special trains in the important lines to relax the crowd.
It has become routine for the Indian Railways on imposing such penalties for the commuters as the number of ticketless travelers has been increasing every year. In May 2019, about 27,000 people were penalized for traveling in the trains without tickets across India while October had reported with 40,000 people.
The reports have cited that the number of illegal travelers has raised by 60% in the last five years. For the year 2014-15, India has reported with 1.87 crore passengers who traveled without tickets while the number elevated to 2.76 crore in 2018-19 during which the Railway department had collected Rs 1822 crore as penalty from these ticketless commuters.