Cracking down on errant providers, railways have bring to an end a food contract and blacklisted 16 contractors besides to collecting a fine of Rs. 1.8 crore in 2,108 cases related to food complaints in the last year. In their efforts to provide quality and hygienic food to passengers, railways have developed and put into operation an institutionalized quality Hygiene of catering services through regular inspections at various levels to address catering complaints.
A centralised catering service monitoring cell (CSMC) has been operationalised to monitor and respond to passenger complaints in addition to a toll-free number (1800-111-321) for early repair of passengers related to catering has been in operation for real-time assistance to the traveling public.
The CSMC provides real-time assistance to 250-300 passengers per day, said by senior Railway ministry. Over the most severe measures taken against providers/ caterers, he said one contract has been terminated, another is under notice for termination while 16 contractors have been blacklisted for breach of terms of contracts in the last year. Disciplinary actions arising from irregularities, complaints and inspections are taken regularly against the licensee, depending on the severity of the lapse. Multi-level inspections are carried out on trains and stations where passenger information is collected through surveys to improve passenger satisfaction. A Twitter handle with the address @ IRCATERING has also been put in place to deal with complaints / suggestions regarding catering services. Another help line (138) for rail users to make complaints / suggestions On food and catering services.Railways have also implemented electronic catering services in 357 major stations to offer broader passenger choices. It has also introduced the introduction of ready-to-eat and precooked foods on trains through IRCTC to ensure the provision of hot meals.