Now, you all know about our famous Tatkal booking at the Online Railway Reservation page. It always fails me when I need to book Tatkal tickets.
Since I needed one for my husband, I decided to go to the nearest Booking Counter and stand in the Tatkal queue. I reached the Booking Office by 7.15am. There were about 20 people in all. The shutters were closed. The office itself was not open. As I saw the people who were not even in a queue, I wondered who is the first one and where do I stand now ! Little did I know that there was one gentleman who was writing down names in a sheet of paper, so that there is some order, when the shutters open.
Whatever said and done, the Booking Counter officials are so punctual and they opened by 7.30am. Set up everything including their computer. And sharp by 8am, the counters were open to public.
This gentleman who wrote down the names was not part of the Railways. He’s also one among us, who has come to book his Tatkal ticket. Every day, a different person takes up this role.
Around 8.30am, he started calling out the names from the list and whoever has written the name and not present at the moment has lost their chance to stand in the queue. The others formed a queue and went and sat in the chairs.
Sharp 9am, I see a lady aka Headmistress walk over with a bunch of forms. Its then I realize that they have printed new forms separately for Tatkal booking. I was reminded of a typical examination hall, where we are being given question papers to solve. She kept reminding everyone that they should have the xeroxed ID proof of the person who is travelling along with his signature and also the original during the time of booking the ticket. Some instructions – one after the other, kept reminding me of the strict disciplinarian she was.
We were given time till 9.30 to fill our forms. She then came and checked our forms along with the ID xerox and put her initials on every form. Also there was a separate counter if you are buying for someone else (Representative) and three counters if you buying for yourself (Self). At sharp 10am when the counters opened for booking, she sat there along with a policeman and regulated the booking of tickets guiding every person as to which counter is becoming free. Even though some people might think like she is treating all of us like children, I found her strict way of dealing with everyone a better approach than to keep shouting at an unruly mob, who want tickets urgently.
In our country, we don’t follow rules on our own. We do only if we are forced to and only if someone is watching us closely. We don’t wait in queue patiently. We don’t give way for others, especially senior people. In these of kind of situations, such a dynamic lady’s active guidance was greatly welcome.
Am so proud to have got my tatkal ticket. With some order in place, queues do move faster :)