An RTI reply has revealed that almost four crore senior citizens have been able to pay full fare for their train travel since March 2020 when the Narendra Modi government removed their concessions due to the coronavirus outbreak in the country.
According to news agency PTI, the RTI request was filed by Madhya Pradesh-based Chandra Shekhar Gaur. The Indian railways said in its reply that close to four crore senior citizens undertook train journeys between March 2020 and September 2021.
The government had suspended train journeys for several months during this period due to the first and second wave of the coronavirus outbreak in the country. While a normal life has resumed across India, the suspension on the concessions for senior citizens has continued to be in force to date.
A woman is eligible to avail 50 percent discounts on train tickets in all classes from the time she turns 58, a male passenger can claim 40 percent discount after he turns 60.
Several users have taken to social media to ask why the government had not restored the concessions for senior citizens even after the pandemic was over.
Why Ind railway are not giving senior citizen rebate when the train no. are changed to pre COVID era? Everything is now at level of preCov and railways are making money from senior citizens also.#IndianRailways @IRCTCofficial @RailMinIndia @AshwiniVaishnaw @ndtv @TheLallantop pic.twitter.com/tYtwtcFC2s
— Abhishek Sharma (@absharma9) November 19, 2021
By when will this benefit be available? pic.twitter.com/rhEIFoZ2Ub
— Vinayak (@mvinayakam) November 19, 2021
But 4 crore senior citizen ko aishe kya jarurat par gayi ki pandemic ke time bhi train journey karni pari.
— Rohan (@rohan9zp) November 21, 2021
— Ramakrishna Chavali (@Ramakri35166306) November 21, 2021
The Indian government’s railway ministry has not indicated on whether it plans to restore the concessions for senior citizens.