New Delhi, March 18 (IANS) The Indian Railways on Wednesday cancelled 64 more trains as a precautionary measure to contain the spread of coronavirus, taking the total number of trains cancelled to 149.
The Northern Railways cancelled 18 trains on Wednesday, a day after it cancelled five trains on Tuesday amid the Covid-19 pandemic outbreak, which has affected 151 people across the country.
Northern Railway spokesperson Deepak Kumar said: "Eighteen trains have been cancelled due to low occupancy and operational reasons."
He said the decision was taken in order to regulate unnecessary crowding at stations, as a temporary measure.
The spokesperson also said the Railway Board has directed all Divisional Railway Managers to raise platform ticket prices to Rs 50 at important stations that deal with large rush of passengers or visitors, as in March 2015, the railways had delegated them powers to increase their rates to regulate rush during specific requirements under intimation of its office.
Meanwhile, the Southern Railways cancelled 24 trains while the Western Railways cancelled 22 trains, against 10 trains cancelled on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, several zonal railways cancelled 85 trains citing low occupancy amid the coronavirus outbreak in several states.
The Central Railway cancelled 23 trains, followed by South Central Railway cancelling 29 trains, Western Railways cancelling 10 trains, the Northern Railways five, North Western Railways four, East Coast Railways five and South Eastern Railways cancelling nine trains from March 18 to April 1.
The railways even increased the prices of the platform tickets at over 300 stations from Rs 10 to Rs 50 to stop crowding at the railway stations.
With 25 new cases of coronavirus infections reported on Wednesday, the number of COVID-19 patients in India climbed to 151, up from 126 a day earlier, the Health Ministry said.