India's first engine-less 'Train 18' to hit tracks ahead of Kumbh Mela, PMO nod awaited
New Delhi, Jan 3: The Indian Railways is set to begin the commercial run of India's fastest train, Train 18, before the commencement of Kumbh Mela on January 14. The Train 18 will run between Delhi and Varanasi next week, just ahead of the Kumbh Mela in Allahabad.
It is also likely to be one of the four special trains to ferry delegates of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas on January 24 from the Kumbh Mela in Allahabad to the national capital in time for the Republic Day event.
The train which will run at a speed of 130 kmph will reduce journey time between the two cities from the present 11 hours and 30 minutes to 8 hours, the Railways said.
Union Railways Minister Piyush Goyal on Wednesday inspected rake of Train 18, but refrained from confirming a date for the launch. "It will begin service soon," said Goyal.
A video of the trail run of Train 18 was recently shared on microblogging site Twitter by Union Railways Minister Piyush Goyal wherein the train was seen running at a speed of 180 kmph. The trial confirmed that Train 18 was the fastest train in india.
About Train 18:
Train 18 has diffused lighting, automatic doors and footsteps beside GPS-based Passenger Information System. The footstep in a coach's doorway slides outward when the train stops at a station enabling passengers to alight safely with comfort. The footstep would adjust to the variation in height between a train's floor and the platform.
The train will also be fitted with CCTV, central air conditioning, diffused lighting, GPS-based passenger information systems, two executive compartments in the middle with 52 seats (as against the regular cabin's 78).
The train is being built by Integral Coach Factory and is going to be unveiled on October 28, 2018. It will go through testing and trial near the factory for about four days, before it gets handed over to the Research Design and Standards Organisation (RDSO) for further testing. Once the trains get approved, they will be a real boon to commuters.