Railways to take over catering on trains from IRCTC

NetIndian News Network

New Delhi, July 23, 2010

The Ministry of Railways today unveiling the new Railway Catering Policy 2010 today as part of which the Indian Railways Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) will be only responsible for running of food plazas, food courts and fast food units.

An official press release said the management of all major and minor units, including mobile units, except food plazas, food courts and fast food units, would be departmentalised.

The new policy also provides for departmentalisation of mobile catering services, including base kitchens, in phases.

The policy is in pursuance of an announcement made by Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee, while presenting the Railway Budget 2010-11, that it was under revision and would be finalised soon.

The release said the policy would have an inclusive approach where, from the least advantaged passenger to the relatively affluent, would be provided catering services in a socially responsible manner.

It said a specialised team of ex-cadre of supervisors and officers upto Senior Scale would be formed, which will be filled by incumbents from existing Railway cadres.

Trained personnel from reputed Institutes of Hotel Management and Catering Institutes would be involved in the provision of catering services through departmental staff, it said.

The Railways said the Standard Bidding Document would be formulated professionally with emphasis on quality through adequate weightage. To ensure quality, hygiene, cleanliness and use of standard ingredients for food served on trains a grid of mega, medium and small base kitchens would be set up and meals for mobile catering would be picked up from these railway-pecified, supervised and controlled base kitchens.

The policy provides for monitoring mechanisms through inspections and quality checks and for complaint redressal.