India boasts of the world's fourth-largest railway network by size. It not only helps lakhs of people get from one place to the other, but also amounts to a major chunk of India's goods transport. Over the years, Indian Railways has grown by leaps and bounds. The journey of Indian Railways from April 16, 163 - when the first train operated between Mumbai and Thane - to this date is a fascinating one. In the last few days, three trains have hogged the limelight. Vande Bharat Express, Tejas Express and a DEMU train connecting North and South Tripura may fall under separate Railway zones but tells one story - the story of India's development.
Indian Railways, which was once plagued by train delays, is now moving into an era where you can claim compensation or refund for delays. India's rail-network is vast - is a well-established fact. With rolling out of Vande Bharat Express and first private-run train Tejas, India moves into an era of high-speed or semi-high speed trains that offers luxury and saves time. While Prime Minister Modi envisions a $5 trillion economy-target, Indian Railways is surely making an-all out effort to be a part of this change for future.
Gone are the days when the success stories of Indian Railways were limited to 'Rajdhanis and Shatabdis'. Welcome these three trains - who are special in their own way.
DEMU train service Tripura
Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) has launched rapid transit train service Diesel Electric Multiple Unit (DEMU) connecting Northern Dharmanagar and Southern Sabroom in Tripura from Agartala. Four pairs of DEMU trains have been introduced to connect Northern end of the state with the Southern end. Three pairs would run commercially between Agartala and Sabroom while one pair to connect Sabroom with Dharmanagar via Agartala.
It is a huge achievement for Indian Railways as it had a challenging terrain. The new train connects Tripura and the entire north-eastern region to Bangladesh. The new train would facilitate trade and commerce as well as the movement of goods and services between India and Bangladesh. With Bangladesh's Chittagong Port being nearby - a new trade route is likely to open.
Vande Bharat Express
Also known as Train 18 is a semi-high speed train which will connect New Delhi with Katra town in Jammu and Kashmir. Union Home Minister Amit Shah called it a big gift for Jammu and Kashmir's development. The train will commence its first commercial journey on October 5. The train will significantly cut down the time taken to travel from Delhi to Katra.
Tejas is a high-speed train which will run between Delhi and Lucknow. It is India's first 'private' train run by the IRCTC. The train commenced its first journey today by UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath from Lucknow railway station. This is for the first time that IRCTC, who used to earlier take care of the catering inside India Railways trains will be wholly and solely responsible for all the running operations of a train.
With each passing year, Indian Railways is striving towards delivering comfort and luxury while still maintaining its basics and lifeline status.