Steps Taken to Prevent E-Ticketing Touts in Indian Railways

During rush period like festivals, summer vacations, holidays etc. when demand exceeds availability, some instances of attempt to misuse reservation system do come to notice. However, in order to prevent the activities of unscrupulous elements including touts, several checks have been deployed by Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) including the following:

  1. Creation of only one IRCTC User ID on a given mobile number and email ID.
  2. Setting a limit of booking 6 Railway tickets by an individual user in a month. This limit has been revised to 12 Railway tickets in a month for those individual users who have linked their IRCTC user ID with their respective Aadhaar number and ensured that at least one of the passengers in the passenger list is verifiable through Aadhaar.
  3. Checking of User IDs on daily basis and deactivation of those IDs found using malpractices like fast booking of tickets. Around 1.26 lakh user IDs have been deactivated from 1st April 2018 to 31st May 2019.
  4. Checking of Tatkal tickets booked in first minute for frivolous users on daily basis and cancellation/release of such tickets on suspicion.
  5. Only one booking in one user login session except for return/ onward journey between 0800 and 1200 hours.
  6. Checks applied on minimum time required to enter the passenger details and displayed CAPTCHA at the time of e-ticket booking by users.
  7. Restriction on authorized agents of IRCTC for booking tickets during first fifteen minutes of opening of Advance Reservation Period (ARP) booking and Tatkal booking.

Regular checks are conducted in mass contact areas such as Passenger Reservation System (PRS) centres, booking offices, platforms, trains etc. to prevent unauthorized ticketing activities including the use of scripting software. Such checks are also intensified during peak period like festivals, holidays etc. The number of touts arrested along with number of e-tickets recovered from them during the last two years is as under:-


Year Number of touts arrested Total number of e-tickets recovered
2017 1261 11500
2018 2391 78001


Unauthorized carrying on of business of procuring and supplying of railway tickets is a punishable offence under Section 143 of the Railways Act, 1989. The persons found involved in such illegal activities are punished as per extant legal provisions laid down in Section 143 of the Railways Act, 1989.

This information was given by the Minister of Railways and Commerce & Industry, Shri Piyush Goyal in a written reply to a question in Lok Sabha today.