Aadhaar is not mandatory to book train tickets, the ministry for Railways has clarified. However, the ministry said it is encouraged to promote it on a voluntary basis by incentivising it.
In a written reply in the Lok Sabha, Minister of State for Railways Rajen Gohain said there is no proposal to make Aadhaar number compulsory for booking tickets. "However, as of January 1, 2017, the requirement of Aadhaar verification for booking concessional railway tickets for senior citizen has been introduced on a voluntary basis", he said.
The minister said in order to incentivise the passengers for linking their Aadhaar ID and mobile number for booking of tickets, the present ceiling of a number of tickets to be booked by individual users every month on the website of Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation(IRCTC) has been revised to 12 tickets.
In order to motivate passengers for linking their Aadhaar ID and mobile number for booking of tickets, railways have limited the number of bookings to twelve tickets on the website of Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), the minister said. This, he said, was for those individual users whose accounts are verified through Aadhaar ID subject to conditions that one of the passengers on the ticket to be booked is verifiable through Aadhaar.
"A reward scheme has also been introduced by IRCTC to incentivise linking of Aadhaar with the user ID of IRCTC," the minister also said.