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In a bid to bring transparency in issuing tickets and to check corruption among the ticket checking staff, the Indian Railways is planning to provide Hand Held Terminals (HHT) to them, so that availability of vacant positions can be instantly provided to the passengers. 

The information about the availability of berths would be feeded and updated regularly through different cities spread across the whole country. 

The Hand Held Terminals provided to the Travelling Ticket Examiners (TTEs) helps to download information through GPRS, updating the chart while checking the tickets in the coach, informing the status of vacancy to central server periodically through GPRS, collecting excess fare, penalty and other charges, issuing the receipt for the same and report for the cash collected by TTE giving a printed receipt to the passenger. 

It may be mentioned here that CRIS (Centre for Railway Information System) has developed the application based on IBM Lotus Expeditor technology, which would help in pooling all the information provided to Hand Held Terminals. 

The HHTs would be linked to PRS (Passenger Reservation System) which would have the details about the reservation status. Pointedly, PRS provides reservation services to nearly 1 million passengers a day on over 3500 trains running throughout the country. The PRS is available at over 6,000 counters in more than 1,800 locations throughout the country, including all major stations. 

The application architecture is distributed with 5 server clusters placed in data centres in five cities including New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Secunderabad. 

Further, information in the Hand Held Terminals would be updated regularly through a vast network of computers and servers spread across the country at about 17 locations. These locations would be set up at Allahabad in North Central Railway, Delhi in Northern Railway, Gorakhpur In North Eastern Railway, Jabalpur in WestCentral Railway, Chennai Central in Southern railway, Hubli in South Western Railway, Howrah in Eastern Railway, Kolkata in South Eastern railway, Guwahati in North Frontier Railway, Hajipur in East Central Railway, Secunderabad in South Central Railway, Bilaspur in South East Central railway, Jaipur in North Western railway,Mumbai Central in Western Railway and Bhubaneshwar in East Coastal Railway. 

Public relations officer of North Central Railway said that Hand Held Terminals would go a long way in serving the needs of the passengers, as they would be informed about the latest position of seat availability.