New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday flagged-off Vande Bharat Express, formerly known as Train 18 from New Delhi Railway Station. The newly launched train is India’s first semi-high train, hitting a speed of over 180 kmph during a trial run.Also Read - General Bipin Rawat’s Cremation on Friday: Govt Plans to Appoint New CDS in Next 7-10 Days | Key Points
PM Modi, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal and members of the Railway Board were on board the train on its inaugural journey from New Delhi to Varanasi. Also Read - A True Patriot, India Will Never Forget His Exceptional Service: PM Modi On Gen. Rawat's Demise
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- Vande Bharat Express, formerly known as Train 18, was flagged-off by PM Modi at 10 AM from New Delhi Railway Station. The train will travel from Delhi to Varanasi in nine hours and forty-five minutes.
- It has 16 air-conditioned coaches of which two are executive class. The total seating capacity is 1,128 passengers.
- All coaches are equipped with automatic doors, GPS-based audio-visual passenger information system, on-board hotspot WiFi for entertainment purposes and very comfortable seating.
- All toilets are bio-vacuum type. The lighting is dual mode, that is diffused for general illumination and personal for every seat.
- Every coach has a pantry facility to serve hot meals and, hot and cold beverages. The insulation is meant to keep heat and noise to very low levels for additional passenger comfort.
- For travelling between New Delhi and Varanasi, the passengers will have to shell out 30-40 per cent higher fare than Shatabdi Express.
- A New Delhi-Varanasi journey by the train would cost Rs 3,310 and Rs 1,760 for Executive Class (EC) and Chair Car (CC), respectively, inclusive of taxes.
- Passengers travelling from Varanasi to New Delhi will have to pay Rs 1,700 for CC and Rs 3,260 for EC ticket.
- The fares for Delhi-Kanpur journey by Vande Bharat Express has been fixed at Rs 1,090 for CC and Rs 2,105 for EC, and between Delhi and Prayagraj, they would be Rs 1,395 and Rs 2,750, respectively.
- Between Kanpur and Prayagraj, the fares for CC would be Rs 595 and for EC Rs 1,170.
- A journey between Kanpur and Varanasi in CC would cost Rs 1,020 and in EC Rs 1,815.
- Passengers travelling from New Delhi to Varanasi in EC would be charged Rs 399 for morning tea, breakfast and lunch, while those opting for CC would need to pay Rs 344 for the same. Similarly, the passengers travelling from New Delhi to Kanpur and Prayagraj will have to pay Rs 155 and Rs 122 for EC and CC, respectively. From Varanasi to New Delhi, the passengers would be charged Rs 349 and Rs 288 in the EC and CC, respectively. They will be served evening tea with snacks and dinner.
- No concession and child fare shall be allowed in this train.
- However, tThe passes of the Members of Parliament and MLAs, other coupons, military/ para-military warrants etc., having full reimbursable fare shall be allowed.
Vande Bharat Express has been designed by the Integral Coach Factory (ICF), Chennai. The complete in-house design and manufacture of this train which was finished in just 18 months.