If you’re a frequent traveler on the Indian Railways, you must have witnessed at least a few people gleefully ignoring the rules and announcements on trains and at railway stations. From littering and crossing the train tracks, to travelling without a ticket, Indians don’t have a great reputation when it comes to following regulations when travelling. But while flouting some rules might only earn you a stern warning, some can result in fines, and even imprisonment. We tell you what fines to watch for on your next trip.
Don’t forget your ticket
Travelling without a ticket is probably one of the most common offences. According to data released by Central Railway last week, ₹155 crore was collected in fines from April to December 2019 under a special drive against ticketless travel. Four ticket checkers collected record amounts of more than a crore each.
If you are caught travelling without a ticket on Indian Railways, you’ll face a penalty. You will be asked to pay a minimum fine of ₹ 250, along with the cost of the ticket for the distance you have travelled. If you don’t have the money or refuse to pay up, you stand the chance of being handed over to the Railway Protection Force (RPF) and booked under Section 137 of the Railways Act. The RPF presents these passengers in front of a magistrate, who is authorized to slap a fine of up to ₹1,000 on them. Failing to pay the penalty can result in being imprisoned for up to six months.
As e-tickets gain popularity, another thing to keep in mind is that you have to produce original ID to validate your e-ticket. If the ticket checker comes around and you don’t have ID to prove that the e-ticket belongs to you, you will be considered as a passenger travelling without a ticket and the same rules and penalties will apply.
Play by the rules
There are several other offences that can get you fined. Travelling with a half ticket, travelling in a compartment of a higher class than the ticket you purchased and having a child travel without a ticket will also draw a minimum penalty of ₹250, and additional charges depending on the offence. Travelling on a train while drunk, or drinking on the train is also a serious offence, which might result in one being removed from the train, fined ₹500, and even imprisoned for six months. Smoking on trains in prohibited, and will cost you a fine of ₹200 if you are caught doing it.
We have all seen that “To stop train, pull chain” message painted inside trains, and most of us have been somewhat tempted to pull the chain, just to see what happens. But pulling the chain without a proper reason, like a medical emergency or a fire breaking out, can land you in trouble. According to Section 141 of the Indian Railways Act, this can result in imprisonment for a term of up to one year, or incurring a fine of up to ₹1,000, or both.
If you are caught trespassing, which in this case refers to crossing the railway track or entering a platform without a ticket or permission, is punishable with a fine of ₹1,000 or imprisonment…Read more>>