June 2014, Rishikesh, I with a local friend planned to visit Garhmukteshwar by train. We visited Rishikesh Railway Station to book train tickets. Waiting list – The answer. I request for Tatkal tickets. Waiting list too. A thought it might get confirmed I booked two 3A tickets from Haridwar (30+ km from Rishikesh) to Gajraula.
We were waiting anxiously for Mussoorie Express train chart to be prepared. If I am correct three hours before the train departure time train chart is prepared. And when it was prepared tickets were not confirmed – checked via 139 sms service. We were disappointed but what to do. The next question – refund?
We reached Rishikesh Railway Station to return tickets to receive refund. It was more than 8 pm . Ticket counters were closed for the day. Now what to do?
A railway person was present. We were guided to visit Haridwar Railway Station (30 km) to receive refund.
What? – said I. To get refund for waitlist tatkal tickets booked from Rishikesh Railway Station I have to travel 30 km at this hour? approx. 50 min to 1 hour journey.
I was disappointed but what to do. We traveled via motorbike to reach Haridwar Railway Station. At 21:42 we received refund. Rs. 70 was deducted by Railways as cancellation fee. I was told the counter close at 10 pm . Only one counter is open at night.
Upon query about waitlist tatkal ticket refund rules the counter person said: upto two hours after the train actual departure time.
In short what I want to say is: To receive refund I have to travel that far that was very disappointing but later upon query I was told for late night trains and for hilly or remote areas one might get refund next day within first two hours of counter opening. But the question is: Whether Rishikesh is remote area or hilly area or not Or, what I did was correct?
I agree: IRCTC Online ticket booking much better than manually. At least refund is automatically returned to ones account.