Some have alleged the server was intentionally jammed
People have thronged to Kamalapur Railway Station—and four other railway stations—in Dhaka, to purchase train tickets in advance, to travel during Eid-ul-Fitr.
Ticket sales began around 9am on Wednesday and will continue until 5pm. Each person will be able to buy a maximum of four tickets.
Passengers for the Rajshahi, Rangpur, and Khulna divisions began queueing on Tuesday evening to buy tickets on Wednesday at Kamalapur Railway Station.
People said that the sales executives claimed that the internet server has been down from the very beginning, from 15 minutes after the scheduled time of sales.
In the meantime, ticket-seekers tried to buy tickets from the Bangladesh Railway mobile app and through the website, but neither were working. Both the site and the app are operated by Computer Network Systems (CNS) Ltd.
Rail Minister Md Nurul Islam Sujon acknowledged the CNS’ system failure and said: “We have arranged to sell 50% of our tickets online. But people have not been able to get proper services so far. We will fix those problems after Eid.”
“The responsibility falls upon us, if our assigned company [CNS] fails to render proper service. We have allotted five days to CNS to sell tickets online,” the rail minister added.
Sujon said: “If the online tickets are unsold, we will sell those from ticket counters afterwards.”
ACC team visits Kamalapur
A team of the Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) on Wednesday visited Kamalapur Railway station after they received complaint that people are facing problem in buying tickets using Railway app.
Talking to reporters after visiting the station, Deputy Assistant Director (DAD) of the ACC Md Monirul Islam said they talked to Shamim Ul Alam, general manager of CNS, which developed the app, about the allegation but did not get any satisfactory reply from him.
"We will talk to senior officials of Bangladesh Railway, including Kamalapur Railway Station manager, to investigate the allegation. We will prepare a report after reviewing the overall situation," he added.
Meanwhile, tickets to Chittagong and Noakhali were available at the Airport Railway Station.
People planning to travel to Mymensingh and Jamalpur purchased tickets at the Tejgaon Station.
Tickets for the Netrakona-bound Mohonganj and Haor Express were available at the Banani station; while those for Sylhet and Kishoreganj were available at the Old Rail Bhaban in Fulbaria area.
Tickets for June 1, 2, 3, and 4 will be available on May 23, 24, 25, and 26 respectively.
Meanwhile, return tickets for June 7, 8, 9, 10, and 11 will be available on May 29, 30, 31, June 1, and 2, respectively.
Around 25,571 Eid tickets will be sold in a single day online and through ticket counters.
Sixteen special train services will run on different routes three days before and after Eid, to reduce passenger pressure.