India’s first locomotive-less train ‘Train 18‘ which has also officially become the fastest train in the country left New Delhi station at 12.55am on Saturday as a part of its another trial run. It arrived at Prayagraj [formerly known as Allahabad] junction station at 7:20 am. On its way, it made a brief stop of 2 minutes at the Kanpur station where it arrived at 5:18 am. In its latest trial run, it travelled at a speed of 130km/hr.
At Prayagraj junction the train will remain till 2 pm when it is supposed to start its return journey for New Delhi. On its return journey also it will stop at Kanpur station for 2 minutes scheduled from 3.58pm to 4 pm.
Mr Amitabh, Divisional Railway Manager of the Allahabad Division told that the entire report about the trial run of the train will be sent to the Railway Board. He added that the train will start its regular run only after the officials receive a green signal from the Board.
The train on its earlier trial run went from Safdarjung Railway Station in New Delhi to Agra at a sustained speed of 181 km/hour.
A senior official told that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to flag off the train by mid-January 2019.
It is expected to begin its operations in full swing from January with a reduced speed of 130 kmph. However, the Chief Commissioner Railway Safety (CCRS) has approved the speed of 160 kmph under the conditions of about 20 desired requirements which include fencing along the tracks.
Initially, the train will start running between New Delhi and Varanasi section. Later on, more such trains are expected to be introduced between other prominent destinations in the country.
Train-18 is being touted to replace the Shatabdi trains. It will have two executive compartments with 52 seats each and trailer coaches with 78 seats each. The gleaming blue-nosed Train 18 is a 100-crore indigenously designed train.