The Indian Railways have instructed all station masters to extend the time limit of stay in station retiring rooms for passengers who had to remain stranded due to suspension of train services in the wake of coronavirus outbreak.
According to rule, retiring rooms can be booked for a minimum duration of three hours and maximum up to 48 hours.
“It has been brought to notice that some passengers who were in retiring rooms and booked to travel by train after a day or two are facing problems as all trains are now cancelled and they have nowhere to go.
“Railway Board has decided that in all such cases the stay may be extended in supersession of the rule that limits the number of days a passenger can stay in a retiring room. This relaxation shall be in force till normal train services resume. All station masters are being conveyed this instruction quickly for the benefit of stranded passengers,” the order stated.
The Railways on Sunday suspended all its passenger train services till March 31 as a precautionary measure against the massive outbreak of COVID-19.
“In continuation of the measures taken in the wake of COVID-19, it has been decided that all passenger train services on Indian Railways including Premium trains, Mail/Express trains, Passenger trains, Suburban Trains, Kolkata Metro Rail, Konkan Railway etc shall be cancelled till the 2400hrs of March 31, 2020,” stated a notification issued by the Ministry of Railways on Sunday.
However, the movement of goods trains will continue to ensure supply of essential items in various parts of the country, it added.
The Railways have announced full refund for all cancelled trains till June 21, 2020.