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Vande Bharat sleeper coach and Vande Metro to be rolled out by next year, ET Infra

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According to a Railways official, the country could see its first Vande Bharat sleeper train as early as March next year, with the Integral Coach Factory aiming for a 2024 rollout.

“Sleeper coach of Vande Bharat will be rolled out in the current financial year where the first train is under production and will be rolled out in March 2024,” BG Mallya, the General Manager of ICF, said.
In addition to the sleeper train, the ICF is also building a new class of the affordable train, called the Vande Metro. According to officials, the Vande Metro is a 12-coach train that will be used for short-distance travel. The Vande Metro is expected to be rolled out by January 2024.

“Vande Metro will be rolled out by January which will have 12 coaches,” adds Mallya.

Current Vande Bharat trains are all seater coaches, making them non-viable for overnight journeys, a problem the new sleepers are expected to solve.

These sleeper trains are being manufactured by a consortium of India’s Rail Vikas Nigam Limited (RVNL) and Russia’s TMH Group – which bid the lowest to supply 120 of the 200 new version of Vande Bharat sleeper trains – while the other 80 will be manufactured by a consortium of Titagarh Wagons and BHEL.

The new sleepers are reportedly an alternative to the Rajdhani trains.

Alok Kumar Misra, GM (Mechanical) at RVNL, told Times of India in August that each Vande Bharat sleeper train will be designed to achieve speeds of 160 km per hour and will have 16 bogies – eleven AC 3 coaches, four AC 2 coaches and one AC 1 coach. Railways can extend the number of coaches to 20 or 24, he said.

Earlier this month, on September 5, Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw announced that Madhya Pradesh’s Neemuch could be in line to get a Vande Bharat Express.

“It is time for Vande Bharat to run on this route. Your Member of Parliament (MP) Sudhir Gupta has already requested for the same. Vande Bharat Express will run on your route soon,” the Minister said, addressing public at Neemuch.

The Vande Bharat Express trains are part of the Indian government’s efforts to manufacture trains indigenously, with the very first one flagged off on February 15, 2019, by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. This train runs betwen New Delhi and Varanasi, the Prime Minister’s home constituency.

The project to manufacture indigenous semi-high-speed train sets began in mid-2017, and within 18 months, the ICF Chennai completed Train-18. India’s first semi-high-speed train was renamed Vande Bharat Express in January 2019 to emphasize its made-in-India status. The train achieved a maximum speed of 180 kmph on the Kota-Sawai Madhopur section.

With inputs from ANI

  • Published On Sep 18, 2023 at 08:08 AM IST

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