The Indian Railway Catering And Tourism Corporation Limited (IRCTC) has announced that it will scrap the Lucknow-Delhi and Mumbai-Ahmedabad Tejas Express train service citing “low occupancy levels” due to the Covid-19 pandemic, according to media reports.

In a statement on Monday, the Railway PSU said, “The management has decided to cancel all departures of IRCTC Tejas trains due to low occupancy levels resulting from coronavirus(Covid-19) pandemic.” It further said that IRCTC will review its decision after seeing the occupancy level of other trains of Indian Railways operating in both these routes.

The Lucknow-New Delhi (82501/82502) Tejas Express will remain cancelled from November 23 whereas Ahmedabad-Mumbai (82901/82902) will remain cancelled from November 24.

IRCTC started the Lucknow-Delhi-Lucknow Tejas Express on October 4, 2019, and the Ahmedabad-Mumbai-Ahmedabad on January 19 this year. The two services are the first set of trains run by a corporate entity, IRCTC, a subsidiary of the Indian Railways.

After remaining suspended for almost seven months due to nationwide Covid-19 containment measures, the Mumbai-Ahmedabad Tejas Express resumed operations from October 17. According to a Livemint report, the occupancy of the train, which has 736 seats, was at just 25 to 40 per cent as against 50-80 per cent before the outbreak.