(An Organisation Under Ministry of Railways)
About Projects
CRIS Projects at a glance
CRIS IT Projects Status
Tenders & Payments
» View More
Abut UTS

Twenty one million passengers travel daily on Indian Railways using the unreserved journey facility. An unreserved ticket authorizes these journeys but as the name implies, offers no reserved seats or berths. The ticket is not specific to a train service either. This facility is predominantly used by commuters and suburban travellers – over short distances where assured seating is not a necessity. It is also available to lower income groups travelling longer distances and connects the rural hinterland to districts, towns and cities. Tickets are issued to the unreserved passenger any time of day or night as booking offices remain open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The Unreserved Ticketing System (UTS) caters to this segment of the market and seeks to provide a centrally administered computerized ticketing system over the entire Indian Railways. Today more than ninety percent of the unreserved tickets are sold through this system. The ability of the system to deliver ticketing at remote corners of the country and provide uninterrupted services everywhere has been lauded by the Government of India. The project, along with the CRIS team responsible for its initial design and implementation, won the Prime Minister’s Award for Excellence in Public Administration. Details regarding the project are provided here and, if you have any questions or want to contact us, please email us at uts(at)cris.org.in.


Unreserved Ticketing at Railway Counters

The unreserved ticketing system began as a pilot project in August 2002 on Northern Railway. A precursor to this centralized ticketing system was the Self Printing Ticket Machines (SPTMs), a standalone system that was phased out with the arrival of UTS. Initially the central hardware architecture was supported with station level servers to ensure business continuity in the event of network failures. The booking office operator dispensed the tickets using dumb terminals and dot matrix printers. Over the years with improved reliability of the network a newer design came into force with the introduction of thin clients provided to the operator. For details regarding these, please check out our Technology section.

The graph below shows the growth of the service from 2002. Today the service is available at 5975 locations over all the 16 Zones of the Indian Railways. The Zonal Railways are responsible for manning the UTS counters and running the services, while CRIS maintains the application and ensures continuity of business at the system level. There are nearly 100 ticket types that are sold through the system – based on class of travel, concessions for senior citizens and children, concessions to other categories, and season tickets. The business rules and fares are determined by the policies of the Ministry of Railways.


Jan Sadharan Ticket Booking Sewa (JTBS)

Ticketing services for the unreserved sector were also outsourced as per Railway Board’s Jan Sadharan Ticket Booking Sewa (JTBS) scheme launched in January 2007. Currently, JTBS outlets are available at 488 locations. These outlets provide self employment opportunities and the operators are offered a commission per passenger. The terminals at these counters connect to the central servers for issuing the tickets.

Yatri Ticket Suvidha Kendra (YTSK)

Ticketing services for the unreserved sector were also outsourced as per Railway Board’s Yatri Ticket Suvidha Kendra (YTSK) scheme launched in August 2014. Currently, YTSK outlets are available at 28 locations. These outlets provide self-employment opportunities and the operators are offered a commission per passenger. The terminals at these counters connect to the central servers for issuing the tickets.

Automatic Ticket Vending Machines

Apart from manned counters for dispensing tickets, there are also automatic ticket vending machines (ATVM) that are operated using smart cards and touch screens. This technology was first introduced in Mumbai in Oct’2007 and its success led to proliferation to other metropolitan cities. Chennai, Secunderabad, Delhi and Kolkata are the other cities where these machines are currently commissioned. Presently, 2393 ATVMs are operational across 14 Zonal Railways viz. Northern, North Central, North Western, North Eastern, Central, Western, West Central, Southern, South Western, South Central, Eastern, South Eastern, East Coast and South East Central Railway.

Cash-Coin & Smart Card operated Ticket Vending Machine (CoTVM)

In an endeavour to use cash & coins for ticketing by passenger themselves, the concept of Cash-Coin & Smart Card operated ticket vending machine (CoTVM) was evolved. Presently, 424 CoTVMs are operational across 9 Zonal Railways viz. Northern, Central, Western, Southern, South Western, South Central, Eastern, South Eastern and South East Central Railway. The CoTVM is an unmanned kiosk which is operated by passengers themselves. It has the feature of issuing Journey tickets & Platform tickets and renewing Season tickets. It can also be used to recharge Smart cards used in ATVMs. Payment is in the form of coins, bank notes and smart cards. The machine is capable of accepting specific coins of Rs.5 and Rs.10 and bank notes of Rs. 5, Rs.10, Rs.20, Rs.50 and Rs.100 of Gandhi series. The machine does not accept currency notes with Ashoka Chakra Emblem.

Mobile Ticketing

UTS on Mobile Project has been launched with paperless ticket option in 22nd Apr. 2015 for Android and Windows smart phones. Now, paper ticket option has also been enabled where the ticket can be printed at ATVMs on stations. Currently, the application is implemented in suburban sections of SR,CR,WR,ER,SER,SCR and non-suburban sections of NR (NDLS-PWL & NDLS-GZB) and SECR. The Mobile Application covers 899 stations. Currently, appx. 18,800 tickets are booked daily, covering appx. 1.14 lakh passenger travel & generating revenue of appx. Rs 8.9 lakh. Journey, platform and season tickets can be booked through this App.

UTS Application

The application has been developed with a two-layered architecture in C++. The database requirements are met through a Sybase product viz. ASE-CE.

Currently, the hardware is deployed across 06 data centres, including one data centre for Disaster Recovery. To cater to the expansion of the user base for this application, the setup was revamped and migrated to a high-end Virtualized setup. This is the first time that Virtualization has been implemented for an application of Indian Railways. The backend setup has a provision to support Business Continuity ensuring nearly 100% uptime for the application. Besides this, at the client end, the so called ‘Smart Clients’ have been deployed which are basically thin clients with a footprint of Relational Database Management System (RDBMS) SAP Sybase ASA and application image. These ensure continuous business operations in the event of network / backend outage for 3 days for thin clients. The application rides on the Unified Ticketing Network (UTN) for Unreserved Ticketing System.

The printing device is a customized Dot Matrix Printer. However, in case of ATVMs & CoTVMs, thermal printers are being used. CRIS works as the coordinating agency for procurement of peripheral equipment for the Zonal Railways. For details on current procurements, please go to our section on Tender Notices.

The picture here shows a typical ATVM & CoTVM kiosk. The kiosks have a touch screen based user interface, a smart card reader, a thin client and a thermal printer. CoTVM has extra components i.e. coin validator and cash validator. The front-end application is developed in Java using Netbeans with Linux OS and SAP Sybase ASE RDBMS.


Mobile Ticketing

The Mobile App has been developed in Android Studio in Java & XML for Android App and in Visual Studio in C# for Windows App. The utsonmobile website www.utsonmobile.indianrail.gov.in is developed in HTML5, Java Script, Media Query, CSS and Java using Wicket Framework.

The Unreserved Ticketing Services group is part of the commercial applications division within CRIS working under the guidance of Sh. B. V. L. Narayana, Director Passenger Systems. The group is currently led by Sh. Navin Kumar Parsuramka, General Manager, an Indian Railway Traffic Service officer with around 24 years of experience. He is assisted by Sh. P. K. Varshney, Project Officer who is a domain knowledge expert. The team includes Principal Project Engineers, Senior Project Engineers, Project Engineers, Senior Software Engineers & Software Engineers spread across the CRIS regional offices at New Delhi, Kolkata, Secunderabad, Chennai and Mumbai.


Last updated/reviewed on : 24/10/2017