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Booked: Berths to Bihar for Holi

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By OUR CORRESPONDENT in Ranchi
  • Published 25.02.07
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People throng the railway reservation counter in Ranchi. Picture by Hardeep Singh

Ranchi, Feb. 25: With the festival of colours round the corner, the rush on Bihar-bound trains and buses from the city has started increasing.

While most seats in private buses leaving for Bihar have been booked, the rush for seats on Patna-bound trains are gradually catching up. The rush is expected to remain till Holi, which would be celebrated on March 3 and 4.

Of the three Patna-bound trains, reservation is available for seats on Ranchi-Patna Superfast Express and Hatia-Patna Pataliputra Express, though in limited numbers. No berths are available in Hatia-Patna Express.

Seats on buses to Bihar are also getting booked fast. About 60-odd private buses leave Jharkhand for various places in Bihar every day.

“Between February 28 and March 2, 90 per cent of the seats have been booked in all these buses,” said Ranchi Bus Owners’ Association president Krishna Mohan Singh. “In the next couple of days, we expect the remaining 10 per cent also to be filled up.”

Unlike trains, commuting by buses is cheaper and faster, especially as the road transport goes to more places.

Buses charge about Rs 30 less than what a sleeper berth on an express train costs. The vehicles reach Patna in eight hours, about three hours less than what an express train takes. Further, unlike trains, direct buses are available to several places.

But railway sources said seats on the two Patna-bound trains would be filled up by the end of the month. “This has always been the trend. Reservations pick up before the festival. The seats would be filled by February 28,” said a source in the railway.

Extra coach

A sleeper coach will be added to the Hatia-Delhi Jharkhand Swarn Jayanti Express on February 25 and 28 and also on March 2, 4, 7 and 9. This extra coach, sources said, would be able to take care of the rush.