No service tax on Rail e-tickets till March 2018


New Delhi: The Union Government has decided to extend by six months service tax exemption on train e-tickets booked online by passengers. It was started post demonetization in November last year and likely to cause an annual revenue loss of approximately Rs 500 crore to the public transporter.

“The Railway Board has decided that the exemption from payment of service charge on booking of e-tickets/i-ticket granted upto September 30, 2017 be extended upto March 31, 2018 or review of the exemption id advised earlier,” said an order by Vikram Singh, Director Passenger Marketing, Railway Board.

The service charge exemption was announced in November 2017 after demonetization to encourage passengers to opt for online mode of transactions. Passengers booking e-tickets through Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) web portal were exempted from paying Rs 20 to Rs 40 per booking for non AC and AC tickets.

Railway has been facing an operational loss of Rs 36000 crore annually owing to subsidized passengers fare. Passenger fare has not been increased in last three years but for the dynamic pricing system last year.

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