Catering services are provided by Zonal Railways and Indian Railway Catering & Tourism Corporation Limited (IRCTC) to passengers departmentally or through private licensees in trains in accordance with the provisions of Catering Policy 2010 and other instructions issued from time to time. At present, 117 mobile units are being managed by IRCTC.
The Ministry of Railways has notified the menu and tariff of Rajdhani/Shatabdi/Duronto express trains and other Mail/Express trains vide Commercial Circular No.32 of 2014 and Commercial Circular No.78 of 2012 respectively. These Commercial Circulars are available at this Ministry’s website Railway Board > About Indian Railways > Railway Board Directorates > Traffic Commercial > Commercial Circulars. Besides this, sale of A-La-Carte items in Mail/Express trains has also been permitted. These instructions dated 26.09.2012 are available at IRCTC’s website www.irctc.com > Catering > IRCTC: Standard Menu > A-La-Carte Menu.
In its endeavour to provide quality and hygienic food to the passengers, Railways have developed and operationalized an institutionalized mechanism for monitoring of quality and hygiene of catering services through regular inspections at various levels to address catering complaints. Penal action is taken against the licensee depending upon the gravity of offense which inter-alia includes imposition of hefty fines, termination of contract etc.