According to recent reports, Indian Railways has arrested 60 agents who used illegal software to book Tatkal tickets. With this step of the Indian Railway, users who are trying to book Tatkal tickets through the official IRCTC portal will get access to a substantially higher number of tickets reserved for booking through the Tatkal quota. Here is everything we know about the Railway Protection Force’s (RPF) 'cleanliness' drive:
One of the people that have been arrested as part of the cleanliness drive is suspected of having links with the Bangladesh-based terrorist organisation Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen. In January, the Director-General of the Railway Protection Force, Arun Kumar mentioned about the e-ticket gang and their possible links to terrorism financing and money laundering. He also spoke about how Tatkal tickets will now be available to the users for hours rather than ending in minutes after the bookings open on IRCTC online.
According to reports, illegal software such as ANMS, MAC and Jaguar, bypasses the login captcha, booking captcha and the bank OTP requirements of the Tatkal ticket booking process and is hence able to complete the booking quickly. At the same time, genuine users have to follow the entire process for booking tickets on IRCTC online and hence take longer, increasing the chances of tickets being exhausted by the time they are able to complete the process. RPF Officials also reported that the booking process usually takes about 2.55 minutes (on a good network connection) for a typical customer. However, by using illegal tools and software, agents can complete the process in about 1.48 minutes approximately.
The reports also talk about how the Indian Railways does not allow agents to book tickets immediately as the booking opens on IRCTC online. In the past two months, the Railway Protection Force has apprehended almost 60 agents who used illegal tools and software to book online tickets. It was these agents and the usage of unlawful software that made it virtually impossible for genuine users to book tickets online. Arun Kumar also mentioned that there is not a single ticket that is being booked by unlawful means after the cleanliness drive. The impact of this crackdown has been noticed. Tatkal tickets across the board seemed to have increased. after the operators of the illegal software were nabbed.