The Coupon Validating Machines (CVMs) installed and developed 21 years ago by the Railways, as an alternate to the then ticketing system, will be going down the memory lane from 1stof May 2015. The Coupon Validating Machines (CVMs) also synonymous as the"Red Boxes" will be a matter of reminiscence, as the Railways has bid farewell to it once and forever.
The Coupon Validating Machines (CVMs) and its Coupons were introduced in the Mumbai suburban section of W. Rlys on 15/08/1994. The basic idea behind the introduction of Coupon Validating Machines was to bring down the length of queues at the booking counters and to reduce the time taken for purchasing tickets. The commuter was required to purchase the coupon booklet available from the booking counters and punch the coupons of the appropriate ticket value at the machines installed at the stations, which print the station code of validation, date and time of validation, to undertake the journey on the Western as well as the Central Railway suburban trains. The coupon booklets were initially available with the denominations of Rs. 40 /- & Rs. 60/-, which was later increased to Rs. 50/- and Rs. 100/-. There were a total of 306 nos. of Coupon Validating Machines (CVMs) on the Western line for the convenience of the commuters.
It is worth mentioning that true to its concept, the Coupon Validating Machines was an instant hit among the general commuters, especially, for the occasional travelling masses, thus gaining momentum to its popularity. The average sale of coupon booklets was approx. 20,000 per day and used by approximately 1.70 lakh passengers daily, which amounted to 15% share of the total daily travelling traffic.
The Ministry of Railways has discontinued the Coupon Validating Machine (CVM) Coupons with effect from 1st April 2015 and accordingly, the sale of CVM coupons had been discontinued w.e.f. 01/04/2015. However, the CVM coupons available with the commuters were permitted to be continued upto 30.04.2015 by stamping on the coupons.
Now, these Coupon Validating Machines (CVMs) and the coupon booklets are set to enter into the annals of Railway history as the same has been discontinued to make way for the more technologically advanced ticketing system of Automated Ticket Vending Machines (ATVM) and Mobile Ticketing. They are retired from Railway service and will find its place in the archives after the completion of its final innings on 30th April, 2015.