Eastern Railway (ER) has asked all passengers to ensure that it is their own mobile numbers that appear on reservation forms and not those of ticketing agents or people helping them book tickets using IRCTC IDs.

In a statement, the Railways said some passengers purchase tickets through agents or the accounts of other people, and their own contact number does not get registered in the PRS system. As a result, they often do not receive SMS notifications about revision in a train’s schedule or if the train is cancelled.

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According to the statement issued by the railways, “All the passengers, therefore, are requested to register their own mobile number only as the sole contact number so that they can get SMS sent by Railways regarding any change in time schedule of the trains or any other information communicated by Railways for the benefit of the passengers.”

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A senior ER official said, “The mobile numbers are crucial so we may be able to communicate with passengers on issues such as delays in train running, short terminations or cancellations. They are also informed if their ticketing status is upgraded. Over time, there have been several complaints by passengers that they were not informed of changes. On checking, we realized that the numbers given to us belonged to somebody else. Though messages were sent, the information was not passed on to passengers.”

“Correct mobile numbers also become important during emergencies. In cases of crimes like theft of luggage, security agencies are likely to rely on the number given by the passenger while booking the ticket, “he added.