INDIAN RAILWAYS, an year ago these two words meant, Dirtyness, Tasteless Unhygenic Food, Unpunctuality and Huge Blue Steeled Bullet Carts.
It was an year ago the transformation started, when Shri. Suresh Prabhu took the charge as Railway Minister and things started changing Drastically. Cleanliness improved, food quality is slowly becoming better, Punctuality is too good and the Big blue steeled Bullet Cart is now all set to transform.
Yes, Rail Ministry have took the “Speed” aspect very seriously. In the first Rail Budget of Mr. Prabhu’s career, he strongly emphasized on improving infrastructure and completing old stucked project. And according to Rail Ministry till date 90% of the announcments are either completed or under progress. How good performance is this…
Speed! Who dont loves it. Well Germans clocked the top speed of 130 MPH with a steam Engine in 1920’s. Later on Americans beat them with more speed. As electrified rail routes became famous, “Shinkansen” and “TGV” came into existance by clocking the speed over 300 KMPH. India got its first fully electrified travel train in 1929 and that was “Deccan Queen”. Since then almost >35% Routes are Electrified. But steel “Deccan Queen” takes the same amount of time which it used to take in 1960’s. “Howrah Rajdhani” started in 1969 and still takes the same amount of travel time. Since 1960’s, Indian Air Industry have made huge progress & if Railway want to be in competition, it must transform itself. While trying to survive, This man Suresh Prabhu just changed the way Indians looked at their trains. And yes “Change is Coming, And I know its going to last for long”.
Conventional ICF coaches “Blue Dabba” used to be the lifeline of the Railway until the entry of LHB coaches (Specially used in Rajdhani, Shatabdi, Duronto and mostly in Premium Trains) in late 90’s. These LHB bogies brought more comfort and slight more speed to the Indian Railways. But is this enough?
The answer will be No. “Bullet Train” is announced but it willl take atlest 2023 for it to start functioning. So what can we do for next 7 years? Frankly nobody want to be in that Blue Steeled Bullet Cart anymore.
Indian Railway have the answer. Not 1 but 3.
1st is “Gatiman Express”. Will run betn Agra – Delhi with an avg speed of 111 KMPH. It will ise LHB coaches which are currently used by Shatabdi. It will cross 195 km distance in 105 minutes.
All tests are done. It s about to start in March 2016.
2nd was a surprise. ICF Kapurthala have built coaches which will clock 200KMPH speed. These liveries will come with Automatic Sliding Doors and Personal Infomedia facilties for passengers. 4 out of 20 are ready and will be tested very soon on the tracks. According to the results very soon India will experience some Semi High Speed Action its own coaches with own design and comfort.
3. “Talgo” a spanish rail manufacturers will be testing their trainsets in India very soon. “Talgo” offered the high speed ttainsets to the Indian Railway with its current infrastructure. This is too good move as we will dont have to change the tracks but still we will be able to travel fast. “Talgo” trainsets will travel upto 220 KMPH. First trial will be on Delhi – Mumbai route. Travel time will be lowered by atleast 4 hours. This train with Lighter weight can consume 30% less energy and travel faster, so it will lower the power bills for Railways.
So, just few months as we will try to be more modernised and efficient in the speed. Its quite simple, Speed saves the time and energy/ more time and enrgy = more work/ more work = more productivity.
Its knocking door and we all are waiting eagerly to race with winds.
Kudos Mr. Prabhu! Keep up the good work.