The Ministry of Railways and ICT Division formed a joint committee to develop the One-Stop Digital Railway Passenger Service System app at a meeting last week
Bangladesh Railway is set to launch an integrated mobile app in 2020, with the aim of making it easier to avail passenger services, State minister for the ICT Division, Zunaid Ahmed Palak, has said.
The Ministry of Railways and ICT Division formed a joint committee to develop the One-Stop Digital Railway Passenger Service System app at a meeting last week. In addition to State Minister Palak, Ministry of Railways Secretary Md Mofazzal Hossain, Bangladesh Railway Director General Kazi Md Rafiqul Alam, and Access to Information (a2i) Project Director Md Mustafizur Rahman, were among those in attendance.
According to Railway Ministry sources, passenger services currently have to be availed through more than 22 apps. The launch of the integrated app will offer a one-stop and hassle free solution for passengers.
The app will list train services, locations, ticket prices, and seat availability, and also have information on buses, hotels, restaurants, app-based ride-sharing services, and mobile banking services, and more.
According to a2i, Bangladesh Railway will have to pay around Tk2 crore to integrate the app.
“Bangladesh is now a role model of a digital country to the world, and we are trying to make access to Bangladesh Railway’s passenger services fully digital as we strive for a digital Bangladesh,” State Minister Palak said.
“We will present the system to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for inauguration in 2020,” he added.
During a presentation, a2i Chief Strategist, Forhad Zahid Shaikh, said passengers will be able to book and buy tickets online, learn the locations of trains, local transport, restaurants, and railway police through the app, among other services.
The app also has scope for integration with national identity (NID) cards, Google Maps, payment gateways, the Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission, SMS-based tracking, and ride sharing apps, he added.
Railway Minister Md Nurul Islam Sujan urged all concerned with the project to work in harmony and said: “By installing software and using information technology, we will be able to reduce the waiting time and cost for passengers. At the same time, we will ensure that the Railway Ministry is corruption free.”
Earlier, Bangladesh Railway took up a project to introduce Automatic Ticket Vending Machines (ATVMs) at railway stations across the country.
A joint work agreement was signed between Bangladesh Railway and RCG Microwave Bangladesh to install ATVMs on September 19 last year.
According to the agreement, RCG Microwave Bangladesh would initially install 10 ATVMs at Dhaka’s Kamalapur railway station and Chittagong railway station.
RCG Microwave has already imported the ATVMs from Spain.