Railway's 139 helpline completes a year

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New Delhi, Jul 18 (UNI) The Indian Railways' national enquiry service 139 which recieves over five lakh calls per day, completed its first year today.

Launched last year by Railway Minister Lalu Yadav for North Zone, the service, "139 - Rail Sampark", is delivered by a BPO. ''It expects to touch 20 lakh calls per day by the end of the year,'' Managing Director, Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation Ltd (IRCTC), Nalin Shinghal said.

The service handles enquiries pertaining to arrival, departure, schedules of trains plying between two stations, PNR and reservation of berth status, fare enquiry, availability of Tatkal accommodation, journey planning, concession and cancellation rules, refund rules and trains between stations. The call centre support is available in eleven local languages across India.

''We aim to make 139 the single point of contact with the railways for rail passengers and provide them a complete range of service, including several value added services.'' Mr Akashdeep Singh, Chief Operating Officer, Bharat BPO said, "The idea is to connect with masses, a service that is meant for all should be made effectively and easily available. All the calls are answered, mostly, within three rings and are attended within about two minutes. The efficacy of service was put to test during large scale disturbances in movement of trains during agitations in the recent past.'' "139 - Rail Sampark" will soon be launching the first of its suite of value added services.

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