The Indian Rail Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) on Tuesday (7 April) said it has decided to suspend the services of its three premium trains from 15 to 30 April in view of the coronavirus outbreak.
Speaking to IANS, IRCTC Managing Director M P Mall said, "We have decided to suspend the services of our three trains from April 15 to 30 as we are unable to run it."
Citing the reason for not running the two Tejas Express between the Lucknow-New Delhi and Mumbai-Ahmedabad route and Kashi Mahakal Express between Varanasi-Indore, Mall said, "The IRCTC has outsourced all the services like catering, housekeeping inside both of these trains. And there is problem in those employees joining back as many of them have gone back to their homes."
"And this in view of that we have taken the call to not run the train," he said, adding that even when the employees come back from their respective places, the IRCTC has no mechanism to check them for Covid-19.
The IRCTC has launched its first Tejas Express train between Lucknow-New Delhi last year while it started the second train between Mumbai-Ahmedabad earlier this year.
The IRCTC also launched its Kashi Mahakal Express between Varanasi-Indore in February this year.
Mall also said that the passengers, who had booked the tickets for these trains will be refunded.
The Indian Railways has already the suspended the services of the passenger, mail and express trains from 24 March to 14 April. However, the national transporter has not yet announced its plan to extend the suspension of the train services after the 21-day nationwide lockdown to combat the spread of Covid-19.
The story has been published via a syndicated feed, only the headline has been changed