Alternate Train Accommodation Scheme – “VIKALP”
The Indian Railways have rolled out a new Vikalp scheme on April 1 of the year 2017 which was related to train accommodation. Under the scheme, wait-listed passengers can get an option to travel in premium trains like Shatabdi and Rajdhani by the given procedure by the Government.
Under the new reservation scheme which is called as ‘Vikalp’, or alternate train accommodation scheme (ATAS), the passengers who have booked tickets in other mail or express trains, can avail the option of traveling in premium trains to their booked destinations with zero extra cost.
The aim or objective for rolling out such a scheme of Alternate Train Accommodation Scheme is to utilize vacant berths in premier trains if left after all reservations are done. Passengers who opt for the Vikalp scheme will be provided accommodation in another more luxurious train. But they can choose the new service only after the charts for their current train are prepared only then they can apply. The Vikalp scheme will initially be available for e-tickets only, i.e., the tickets booked through online mode only.
Salient Features of Vikalp Scheme of Indian Railways
The Vikalp Scheme of Indian Railways possesses these features:
- The Alternate Train Accommodation Scheme (ATAS) was presently being launched under the name “Vikalp” on the pilot basis only for the tickets booked through the internet on two sectors i.e. Delhi-Jammu and Delhi-Lucknow sectors. Based on the feedback received by the passengers it will be provided on PRS and also on other sectors.
- The scheme is presently being implemented only across Mail or Express trains of the same category running through same routes.
- No extra charges shall be taken from the passenger and also no any refund shall be provided for difference of fare under this scheme.
- The scheme is applicable to all waiting list passengers irrespective of booking quota and concession provided by the railway facilities. In pilot phase, the scheme will be available on few pre-designated trains in the above-mentioned sectors only.
- Under this scheme, waiting list passengers will give choice to opt for various ATAS scheme.
- ATAS opted passengers who remain fully waitlisted after charting will only be considered for allotment in the alternate express train.
- Fully WL (Waiting List) passengers opted for ATAS should check PNR status once after charting has done.
- The passenger allotted accommodation in alternate train can travel in the alternate train on authority of original ticket.
- Passengers who have been provided alternate accommodation should check PNR status also after preparation of charts of the alternate train for final status in order for getting confirmed.
- Once an ATAS passenger has been allotted alternate accommodation, journey modification will not be permitted afterward. If required in an exceptional case, the passenger will have to cancel the ticket and book a fresh ticket for modified journey.
- When a passenger who has been allotted alternate accommodation has not performed his journey in the alternate train, he can claim for refunds by filing a TDR request form that can be filled online as well as offline.