After setting up pick-up points at railway stations, e-commerce giant Amazon India will now ferry parcels in local trains on the Central Railway. The parcels, which till now were ferried via road, will use the luggage compartment of a local train to get them to Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) station from Kalyan.
According to senior CR officials, about seven tonne worth of parcels will be allowed to be ferried in different trips every day, of which not more than 1.3 tonnes can be carried in a single trip. The scheme is being started on a pilot basis to ensure the transition is smoothly carried out. “We have asked them to prepare a larger parcel instead of small ones, which will make it more convenient to be loaded during the three-minute halt time at Kalyan station,” said an official. The same model is already in practice at Sealdah division of Eastern Railway.
The move is being implemented under the Non-Far Revenue scheme, wherein railways are looking to generate revenue from sources other than ticket sales. CR has an annual target of Rs 82 crore, while Mumbai division has been given a target of Rs 65 crore, of which about Rs 50 crore has been met so far.
Chief PRO of CR, Shivaji Sutar, said, “It is being tried on an experimental basis under our Non-Fare Revenue scheme. There are three vendor coaches, and consignments can be allowed in the middle compartment only during non-peak hours.”
CR official said the move will enable Amazon—which otherwise loads its consignment at Dadar or LTT, depending on the train halting time, or ferries them all the way to CSMT to load in parcel wagons by getting it via road—to now send it through trains.
Amazon India has set up a pickup kiosk at four stations—CSMT, Dadar, Thane and Kalyan—wherein a person can choose one of these kiosks as a pickup point for their products. These will operate between 8 am and 8 pm.
When The Indian Express contacted Amazon India, a spokesperson said, “We are committed to a long-term partnership with Indian Railways to fulfill customer orders faster and in a reliable manner across the country. In line with this, we are running pilots on multiple routes, including the recent pilot across local routes in Mumbai.”
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