COVID19 Effect: IRCTC To Cancel All Existing Mobile Catering Contracts Without Any Fine On Contractors
COVID19 Effect: IRCTC To Cancel All Existing Mobile Catering Contracts Without Any Fine On ContractorsFood served by IRCTC on trains (@ER_FansClub/Twitter)

The Ministry of Railways on Monday (01 March) directed its catering and tourism arm, Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), to cancel all existing mobile catering contracts, reports LiveMint.

In a regulatory filing, the Railway Ministry said "IRCTC is directed to terminate all existing contracts of mobile catering (currently kept in abeyance) involving scope of work of providing cooked food to passengers prepared from base kitchens as per the existing terms and conditions."

"IRCTC is further directed to treat this case as an exception arising out of the pandemic situation and not to treat the case as contractor's default and hence not impose any fine for not providing catering services and also return the Security Deposit (SD) and advance license fee in full after considering or adjusting valid dues, if any," the ministry further stated.

Recently, IRCTC had announced that it will resume its e-catering services from February. This unique service was started by IRCTC in the year 2014 through which passengers could order an array of food of their choice from reputed brands as well as popular regional and local delicacies on phone or online while travelling on trains and get the same delivered to their seats.

In January 2021, the issue of mobile catering was petitioned to the Madras High Court (HC) by members of Indian Railways' Mobile Caterers Association (IRMCA).

The Madras HC had directed the Indian Railways to consider the representation by IRMCA to restore their services, which have been suspended since lockdown was announced in March 2020. The court observed that the authorities should give sufficient opportunity to members of the association to put forward their contentions and pass orders within four weeks.

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