Modi flags off five Vande Bharat Express trains for different states
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday (June 27) flagged off five Vande Bharat trains connecting important cities in different parts of the country.
Modi did the honour from the Rani Kamalapati railway station in the Madhya Pradesh capital, flagging off two of the trains physically and three in virtual mode, officials said.
The semi high-speed trains are: Rani Kamalapati (Bhopal)-Jabalpur (Chhattisgarh) Vande Bharat Express, Khajuraho-Bhopal-Indore Vande Bharat Express, Madgaon (Goa)-Mumbai Vande Bharat Express, Dharwad-Bengaluru Vande Bharat Express and Hatia-Patna Vande Bharat Express.
“These trains will improve connectivity in Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Goa, Bihar and Jharkhand,” Modi tweeted. This is the first time so many Vande Bharat trains have been launched in one day.
With this, the number of Vande Bharat Express trains in the country has gone up to 23 since Modi inaugurated the first train between New Delhi and Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh) on February 15, 2019.
The journey from Bengaluru to Dharwad in AC Chair car will cost Rs 1,165 and executive class Rs 2,210. The return trip will be costlier by Rs 230 since lunch and snacks will be served on board.
The train will depart from KSR Bengaluru City Railway Station at 5.45 am and reach Dharwad at 12.10 pm. It will start its return journey at 1.15 pm and arrive in Bengaluru by 7.45 pm.
This is the second Vande Bharat train in Karnataka. The first one runs between Mysuru and Chennai via Bengaluru.
The Madgaon-Mumbai train is the first Vande Bharat Express for Goa, a tourist paradise.
The train will make the experience of natural views of the Sahyadri mountain range and beauty of the Western Ghats even more memorable, the Central Railway said.
The train departed from Madgaon at about 11 am and is expected to reach Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus in Mumbai by around 8 pm. It will help save about an hour as compared to the current fastest train connecting the two places.
The Goa-Mumbai Vande Bharat Express is the fifth such train in Maharashtra and the fourth from Mumbai.
The existing Vande Bharat trains from Mumbai operate to Shirdi, Solapur and Gandhinagar.
The inauguration of the Madgaon-Mumbai link was earlier scheduled on June 3 and was cancelled due to the horrific Balasore train accident in Odisha.
The Central Railway said regular services of the Madgaon-Mumbai Vande Bharat Express, with a top speed of 160 km, will start from Thursday.
Currently, the journey from Madgaon to CSMT, a distance of 586 km, takes 11-12 hours. It can be covered by the Vande Bharat train in about eight hours.
Another Vande Bharat Express flagged off by Modi links Ranchi and Patna. This is the first Vande Bharat Express for both Bihar and Jharkhand.
The train will start its regular run from June 28. It will depart Patna at 7 am and reach Ranchi at 1 pm, covering 379 km in six hours. On the return journey, it will depart at 4.15 pm from Ranchi and reach Patna at 10.05 pm.
Jharkhand Governor CP Radhakrishnan described the Vande Bharat train as a milestone in India’s technological advancement.
In Bhopal, Modi flagged off two trains from Madhya Pradesh, which will soon see assembly elections. One of them will connect Rani Kamalapati junction with Japalpur in adjoining Chhattisgarh and the other will connect Khajuraho, Bhopal and Indore.
Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw, Madhya Pradesh Governor Mangubhai Patel, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and Union ministers Narendra Singh Tomar and Jyotiraditya Scindia were among those present in Bhopal.
Earlier, after arriving at the Bhopal airport, Modi was to reach the Rani Kamalapati railway station by helicopter but left by roads due to bad weather.
(With agency inputs)