| The yet-to-be-named express at Danapur yard in Patna. Picture by Jai Prakash |
People tired of not getting tickets for the Rajdhani Express from Patna to New Delhi can heave a sigh of relief, as a similar train would run on the same track to facilitate passengers heading to the national capital and back.
The East Central Railway has decided to run an additional express train like the Patna-New Delhi-Patna Rajdhani. The new service would start from August 17.
Danapur divisional railway manager L.M. Jha said: “It would be a gift for the people of Patna who frequently visit the national capital. The train will run behind the Rajdhani Express (12309). It would come as a relief for passengers who had to struggle to get confirmed tickets for the Rajdhani.”
The train will have Linke Holfmann Bush coaches — which do not trip over if the train derails or collides — for better travel experience of the passengers. The coaches of the train would be better than the ordinary ones. It would give the feel of a Rajdhani because the facilities would be on a par with the superfast express.
The only difference between the two trains would be the timing. The new train would reach New Delhi (Anand Vihar) one hour after the Rajdhani Express reaches the national capital. However, the return time could not be confirmed.
At present, the Rajdhani Express leaves Patna at 7.25pm and reaches New Delhi the next day at 7.35am. The yet-to-be-named train will depart Patna Junction at 7.55pm and will reach the national capital at 8.35am.
Jha said the fare of the train would be similar to Sampoorna Kranti Express (12393/12394).
“Though the train will give you a Rajdhani Express-like feel, the fare would be less compared to the already-existing train. We have plans to charge less from the passengers travelling in the new train,” he said.
However, unlike the Rajdhani, all coaches in the train would not be air-conditioned. The train will have 18 sleeper-class coaches, three AC-III coaches and one AC-II and AC-I coach each. Besides, the train will have one pantry and two power car coaches. Passengers will have to cough up Rs 355, Rs 994, Rs 1,440 and Rs 2,465 for sleeper, AC-III, AC-II and AC-I coaches, respectively.
At present, the train has been kept at Danapur shifting yard.
“As soon as we get the go-ahead from the railway board, the service would start. It is all set to go and before the scheduled date, we will surely get the green light,” Jha said.
Excited over the new move, a trader from Anand Puri locality of Patna, Nitin Singh, said: “It is a great news for people like us who make frequent trips to Delhi for business purposes. Getting a confirmed ticket for Rajdhani is tough, however, the railway’s decision to run a similar train like the superfast express is appreciable.”
Ajay Kumar, a resident of Bakarganj, however, believes a new train would hardly be of any help to the passengers.
“Only time will tell whether we will get confirmed tickets for the new train or not because not only Rajdhani, it is nearly impossible to get confirmed tickets for any train to Delhi,” Kumar said.