New Delhi, Dec 19 (IANS) The Railway Board has given approval to the Integral Coach Factory (ICF) to manufacture 45 new sets of Train 18, which has been christened as Vande Bharat Express, by 2021-22, railway ministry officials said on Wednesday.
A senior railway ministry official connected to the development told IANS, “The work for manufacturing 45 new Vande Bharat train sets has been accorded to ICF.”
He said the ICF has been asked to roll out the 45 new trains by 2021-22, when India completes 75 years of Independence. The official pointed out that go through for the manufacturing of 45 trains were given after the Research Designs and Standards Organisation (RDSO) approved a revised design which will ensure that the new trains will be lighter in weight, and will consume less power.
The older design of Train 18 had become a point of contention in the case of the first two train sets operating between Delhi and Varanasi and Delhi and Katra. The first service of Train 18 or Vande Bharat Express was flagged off by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on February 15 this year from New Delhi to his parliamentary constituency in Uttar Pradesh’s Varanasi.
The other train between Delhi and Katra was flagged off on October 5. The official said that the new 45 rakes will be manufactured on a revised design of the Train-18 model approved by the RDSO.
The official also pointed out that the ICF has been asked to first procure the propulsion system for the train and also emphasise on the Make In India initiative of the government while manufacturing the train.
The gleaming blue-nosed train comes with the best amenities, including high-speed on-board WiFi, GPS-based passenger information system, touch-free bio-vacuum toilets, LED lighting, mobile charging points and a climate control system that automatically adjusts the temperature.
The 16-coach train has two executive compartments with 52 seats each and trailer coaches with 78 seats each. The executive class coaches have rotating seats to match the direction of the train.