Indian Railways - Updates

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#136 Jul 6th, 2017, 10:34
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#136

Unhappy

Quote:
Originally Posted by Newworld View Post Sorry, I can't find any alternative with a better chance, very busy on all trains.
Quote:
Originally Posted by snotty View Post Are your dates fixed?
26th seems to be a favourite with many, the highest waiting lists numbers on that day. A day prior is better, two days prior is even more so (I could see W/L 30 or less in a couple of trains). Also there is a ladies berth available on the day prior (25th) for 15959. (your wife and daughter have confirmed tickets, you can try in Tatkal.)
The puja mania you know. Holiday sets in next day as that is Mahasasthi and hence the rush. I have alternatively booked ticket for the same train on 24th. Its RAC. But that will cost me two CL and two extra days of expenses.
#137 Jul 6th, 2017, 12:14
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#137
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Originally Posted by Illuminated View Post The puja mania you know. Holiday sets in next day as that is Mahasasthi and hence the rush. I have alternatively booked ticket for the same train on 24th. Its RAC. But that will cost me two CL and two extra days of expenses.
What's 'CL'?

Kamrup Express has great timings, and if you book from Howrah to Lumding to depart on the 25th you can get RAC in Sleeper Class for under Rs400 or confirmed in 3A for Rs1000.
#138 Jul 6th, 2017, 12:18
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#138
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Originally Posted by Newworld View Post What's 'CL'?

Kamrup Express has great timings, and if you book from Howrah to Lumding to depart on the 25th you can get RAC in Sleeper Class for under Rs400 or confirmed in 3A for Rs1000.
It is Casual Leave.
#139 Jul 6th, 2017, 12:27
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#139
Quote:
Originally Posted by Newworld View Post What's 'CL'?

Kamrup Express has great timings, and if you book from Howrah to Lumding to depart on the 25th you can get RAC in Sleeper Class for under Rs400 or confirmed in 3A for Rs1000.
That is an excellent find Newworld. I have checked myself and you are right.

However, If I do not get it on 26th then no use of 25th ticket as I already have RAC tickets on 24th.
#140 Jul 6th, 2017, 12:29
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#140
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Originally Posted by Illuminated View Post That is an excellent find Newworld. I have checked myself and you are right.

However, If I do not get it on 26th then no use of 25th ticket as I already have RAC tickets on 24th.
Saves 1 day CL and 1 day of extra expenses.
#141 Jul 6th, 2017, 12:45
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#141
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Originally Posted by Newworld View Post Saves 1 day CL and 1 day of extra expenses.
here comes another thing mate..As I have booked hotel 27th to 30th so I have to book another hotel somewhere in that area and I think need to allocate at least a full day to enjoy the place. Compromising the losses and thinking to explore a bit more..That is a travelers mind.
#142 Jul 18th, 2017, 02:07
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#142
Passport details of foreigners to be given for tickets bought in India

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Originally Posted by Wildhorse View Post An Indian friend tried to book tickets for us at the railway reservation counter in Dharamsala (Kotwali Bazaar). General quota tickets! The official told him he needed the passport details of the foreigner to book a ticket for a foreigner.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prakaant View Post There is no such rule to enter passport details of a foreigner to book a ticket for a foreigner in general quota. Had it been, he won't have issued the ticket.

In future also, no one should ask to furnish such details. If insisted, anyone can ask for rule book.
Update: Another official (but also in Kotwali Bazaar) has confirmed that if someone wants to book tickets for foreigners, they have to give the passport details of the foreigner.

There is nothing to this end on the IR website, but if two different people say this, it seems to be true. It was not about money (bribes).
#143 Jul 21st, 2017, 12:17
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#143
India's first solar-powered 1,600 HP train coach

http://www.business-standard.com/art...1400600_1.html

Quote:
According to the official statement, the installed solar rooftop system will generate 7,200 kilowatts (KW) of energy per year that will be used for powering internal lights, fans and other electrical systems of the coach. The project will help offset carbon emissions by 9 tonnes per coach per year and also save about 21,000 litres of diesel for a solar-powered DEMU with six trailer coaches, thereby, saving Rs 12 lakh every year....
#144 Aug 6th, 2017, 09:31
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#144

Smarts and the Station

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Inside the Railways' ambitious plan to modernise 400 stations at a cost of Rs 1 lakh crore and give them an airport-like feel
Habibganj in Bhopal is one of India's 8,495 railway stations.

Like most others in the country, it has partially-roofed platforms with no segregation of departure and arrival lounges, no access control, simultaneous movement of parcels and passengers, haphazard spread of vendors and parking and poor lighting.

It may not be that way for long. The station is slated to don a new look by end-2018.

A 3,024-sq m concourse will be built for the passengers to lounge around; there will be six lifts, 11 escalators, three travelators, two pedestrian subways, one parcel corridor, a walkway, and a 14,037-sq m parking area that will accom modate 284 cars, 839 two-wheelers and five buses. The blueprint of the station with 6,778-sq m landscaping looks stunning on paper (see picture).

So, how much money will the Indian Railways (IR) cough up to engineer this massive makeover? The answer is zero. `100 crore that will be needed for redeveloping Habibganj station is being spent by a private player -Bho pal-headquartered Bansal Group with an annual turnover of `2,000 crore with diversified interests in road construc tion, education, healthcare, mining, iron and steel.

In return, according to the contract, the group receives 45-year-long lease rights for 17,245 sq m prime railway land where it has been investing another `400 crore to develop a trade cen tre, a hospital, a convention centre, a budget hotel and a luxury hotel, with a built-up area of 13-lakh sq ft.

“We are targeting completion of the redevelopment by the end of the next year, even if our contract allows us to drag the project on till December 2019,“ says Mohammad Abu Asif, a con struction manager of the Bansal group over seeing the Habibganj station development. So, by the end of the next year, India will see its first railway station developed via a public private partnership (PPP).

The IR's financial template is pretty simple. India's sec ond largest landlord with 4.76 lakh hectares --the defence sector, with 7.5 lakh hectares, is the largest -has identified 1,092 hectares of vacant land in the vicinity of 400 stations, which are on its priority list for modernization. Despite three fourths of railway land being used up for tracks and structures, and another 862 hectares under encroachment, IR still possesses 51,648 hectares of vacant land, according to data available till March 31 this year. But IR can use only 10,000 hectares for commercial development, the rest being vacant land along the railway tracks, which renders itself unusable for commercial exploitation. Clearly, the land as the sweetener is the underlying formula for the IR as it embarks on one of its biggest ventures: the world's largest station redevelopment programme, at a time when the real estate sector is sluggish.

“I concede the real estate market has been a little low in the last few years. So, naturally the interest shown by the private sector is also low. But we are not deterred by bad real estate market“, said railway minister Suresh Prabhu in an interview to ET Magazine last week (see “This is the Biggest Station Redevelopment Programme in the World“).

Redevelopment on Fast-track

The minister's remark underlines the reason why the IR shifted strategy from a single-track PPP model, as was adopted in case of Habibganj, to multi-pronged financial engineering to undertake this `1 lakh crore exercise. A peek into the blueprints of redevelopment of 65 stations -for which the IR has made tangible progress -demonstrates how it has engaged its zonal arms to redevelop 23 stations through a modified Swiss Challenge method; joined hands with the state governments to redevelop stations (the first being the Bhubaneswar station in collaboration with the government of Odisha) and even cajoled NBCC, a public sector company under the administrative control of the ministry housing and urban affairs, to develop 10 key stations including Tirupati, Delhi Sarai Rohilla, Madgaon, Lucknow, Gomtinagar, Kota and Puducherry. “The railways wanted to give us 40 to 50 more stations, but we want to first experiment with 10 stations before becoming ambitious,“ says Anoop Kumar Mittal, chairman and managing director of NBCC. As planned, the construction giant will pump in some initial funds to develop the vicinity of the railway stations and woo at least 30% of potential customers (for commercial buildings) before speeding up the project.

Then, there are 12 more stations being anchored by Indian Railway Stations Development Corporation (IRSDC). These include Habibganj and Gandhinagar, the only two sta tions where construction work can be seen on the ground. At three oth er stations -Bijwasan and Anand Vihar, both in Delhi, and Surat in Gu jarat -tenders have been invited.

IRSDC's chief executive officer San jeev Kumar Lohia adds: “The sta tions and their surroundings will be world class. For example, there will be an 11-storied luxury hotel built on floating slabs in Gandhinagar station. It will look like as if the building is in the air.“ Lohia knows the task is daunting. “The challenges are a bad real estate market and the penchant for the local municipalities to interfere in our work.“


This is the Biggest Station Redevelopment Programme in the World

One Station Project may Call for Roughly Rs 1,000 crore

Economic Times
#145 Sep 10th, 2017, 11:14
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#145

Making Tracks Towards China



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At Upshi, 50 km south of Leh, a tiny hillock poses a big challenge to a team of railway survey men. A 16-member squad, comprising experienced railway engineers, geologists, bridge specialists and avalanche experts, tosses various options to negotiate the roadblock --from engineering a deep vertical cut to pushing the track towards the existing motor road. A senior geologist in the team is blunt: there's no way we can have a tunnel below this heap of withered granite. There's one more problem, points out another expert. The hillock is too short for a tunnel. So, what's the way out? After some discord, a consensus is arrived at: let the project consult ant RITES, whose survey experts did six recces of the terrain in the past, come up with two alternative solutions and freeze the matter, for good.

If the Government of India has its way, a railway line up to Leh - a district in Ladakh sandwiched between Pakistan occupied Kashmir in the west and China in the north and east -will be a reality in the next few years. The survey for a 498-km-long strategic railway line from Bilaspur (Himachal Pradesh) to Manali (HP) to Leh (J&K) began in September last year. The Ministry of Defence has earmarked `158 crore to the Indian Railways for the survey, with `40 crore released in 2016-17. Depending on the gradients and the alignment, the route length could go up to 650 km, almost the same as the distance by road. But the big picture is this: strategically important Leh -just 250 km from the China border -will finally be connected to Delhi by an all-weather, 1,100-km-long rail route.Though defence requirements are the basic rationale for conceiving a railway line passing through a difficult terrain and high passes -17,480-ft-high Taglang La is one of the four passes on the way -the people living in Mandi, Manali, Tandi, Keylong, Koksar, Darcha, Upshi, Karu, among other towns and villages, will find rail connectivity closer to their homes.

The cost? The survey men are tight lipped; a tentative cost will be known by the end of next year when the second phase of the three-phase survey is completed. “Don't be surprised if the project cost is `1 lakh crore,“ exclaims one of the survey men, with a disclaimer that he does not have all the requisite statistics -route length, total size of the tunnels and bridges and the like to do a back-of-the-envelope calculation.

Last week ET Magazine joined this team of survey men for a stretch of 70 km from Leh to Lato, both in the Ladakh region of Jammu and Kashmir.

Strategic Line

The entire survey is expected to take at least two more years. When it's time for the government to take a call on its implementation, the recent tensions with China and the eventuality of future skirmishes may well determine whether it's executed or not. After all, the Bilaspur-Manali-Leh line will go up to 250 km from the India-China border. It will also be the most challenging project the Railways has ever embarked upon, since it involves constructions in huge mountains and avalanche-prone sections.

And it's not the only line that's planned near this critical India-China boundary. Final location surveys are also being conducted on the eastern front for three other stretches -a 378-km Missamari (Assam) Tenga (Arunachal Pradesh)-Tawang (Arunachal) track, a 227-km-long track from Pasighat (Arunachal) to Tezu (Arunachal) to Rupai (Assam) and a 249-km route from North Lakhimpur (Assam) to Bame (in Along, Arunachal) to Silapathar (Assam). This information was in a written reply by MoS for Railways Rajen Gohain to Parliament in November last year. He added that `345 crore was earmarked for surveys for the four lines, with the ministry of defence releasing `87.18 crore for 2016-17.
Economic Times
#146 Sep 14th, 2017, 00:31
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#146

State-of-the-art Vistadome glass roof a/c coach arrives in Mumbai



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The glass-roofed Vistadome rail car with panoramic view and an observation lounge has arrived in Mumbai. To be put into service by the Central Railway soon, the route and the fare are yet to be decided.

"The specially-designed Vistadome air-conditioned coaches are the first-of-its-kind in Indian Railways, with large glass windows and an observation lounge that offer passengers a panoramic view of the sites along the rail route."

"A standout feature is the roof that boasts electrically controlled opalescence. It can be made transparent for the passengers to get a panoramic view of their journeys. And if passengers want a still better view, they can head to the special observation lounge. It also has a multi-tier luggage rack," Central Railway General Manager D K Sharma said.
Midday

This coach would be added to Jan Shatabdi on the Mumbai Goa route. The fare of a seat for this coach is estimated to Rs 2000/-.
#147 Sep 17th, 2017, 13:18
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#147

Vistadome fare on day 1 costs more than flight ticket

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Fare structure of the Vistadome coach, that will be introduced on Dadar-Madgaon Janshatabdi Express from Monday , may prove to be a deterrent for passengers as airfares are comparatively cheaper. Also, taking a flight will cut through the travel time.

Indian Railways has decided to keep the fare structure of the coach similar to that of the executive chair car. The fare for Mumbai-Madgaon is fixed at Rs 2,235 per person. The cost of flight tickets on September 18, the day the coach is being attached to the train, is Rs 1,845 (SpiceJet), Rs 2,077 (Go Air) and Rs 2,119 (Go Air).

While the train journey is more than 10 hours during monsoon with stoppages at eight stations, excluding Mumbai and Madgaon, flight travel is merely an hour.

The train is scheduled to depart at 5.25 am from Dadar and arrive in Madgaon at 4pm during monsoon. During the non-monsoon period, between November 1 and June 30, the train will depart at the same time from Dadar, but arrive in Madgaon at 2.05 pm.

Ghatkopar resident Rosili EL, who travels frequently be tween Mumbai and Goa, said, "I don't think I would prefer to travel at such an exorbitant rate and, that too, if the journey takes so long."

Ex-railway board member Subodh Jain said, " After the advent of budget airlines, passengers take the train only if flight tickets are not available."

Another former board member asked, "Why would a person prefer to travel by train when air tickets are cheaper, especially when stations are dirty and infrastructure is not comparable with airports?" Divisional Rail Users' Consultative Committee member Jitesh Matalia said, "Railways should come out with a reasonable fare structure, especially when a lot of passengers are shifting to air travel. Also, Konkan Railway trains are most likely to get delayed due to erratic weather in monsoon."

Railways have also suffered because of flexi pricing in premier trains, including Rajdhani Express. In 2016, Air India, on its website, offered spot fares till September 30 on all Rajdhani Express routes at the price of the train's first and second class AC tickets.

A Railways official said, "There may be takers for this coach only during the peak season.."
Times of India
#148 Sep 17th, 2017, 13:49
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#148
What's the difference between this and the Tejas (except for the stop at Thivim)? Both leave at approx the same time, not much diff in travel time.

Edit : And,JS runs everyday even during the monsoon I think.
#149 Sep 17th, 2017, 13:53
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#149
The Vistadome coach will be attached to the Jan Shatabdi. I don't think the facilities available in the Tejas like monitor, headsets are there in the Vistadome.

Quote:
With a view to provide a delightful travelling experience to passengers, the Central Railway (CR) will introduce a see-through Vistadome coach on Mumbai-Goa route from Monday, officials said. The Dadar-Madgaon Jan Shatabdi Express will get a special coach with glass-roof Vistadome, rotatable chairs and hanging LCDs, offering panoramic view of the surroundings.

“A Vistadome (glass-top) coach will be attached to the Jan Shatabdi Express running between Dadar and Madgaon from September 18,” CR’s chief public relations officer Sunil Udasi said today. This special and aesthetically-designed Vistadome air-conditioned coach, is a first-of-its-kind in Indian Railways, he said.

“Commuters travelling on this train will have this special coach with a glass-roof Vistadome, rotatable chairs and hanging LCDs for entertainment. A unique feature of this Rs 3.38 crore 40-seat coach is the double-wide reclining passenger seats that could be rotated 360 degrees for a better sightseeing experience,” Udasi added.

A statement issued by the CR said, the passengers or tourists can now sit relaxed in their seats and enjoy the breathtaking panoramic view from the Vistadome coach, unlike the stereotype train compartments. This special coach was received by the CR at its headquarters- the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) in the first week of September.
Financial Express
#150 Sep 17th, 2017, 14:37
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#150
10+ hours in a seat isn't what passengers want, and they're certainly not prepared to pay a premium for it, that's a very strongly held personal opinion, but also backed up by stats, 700 seats vacant for tomorrow's Tejas (plus 34 available in 1A), the Vistadome carriage on the Jan Shatabdi has only sold 5 tickets, yet the significantly cheaper CC and 2S are waitlisted, also very few AC berths available on Mandovi Express, with no confirmed berths left in non AC., all other trains/classes are waitlisted.

There will be days, maybe even weeks in peak season when all seats will sell, but I can only see the Vistadome carriage and the Tejas losing money in the long run.

(Until 16th November, the Vistadome carriage will only run 3 days a week in each direction, it looks like they only have 1 carriage attached to one rake, with the 2nd carriage coming into service on 16th November.)

The railways are in serious need of a human being with experience to give them some direction and apply common sense to their plans.
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