Indian Railways all set to transform trains through technology like never before! Last year has been phenomenal for the national transporter. With the launching of engine-less, self-propelled- Vande Bharat Express trains to implementation of passenger eco-friendly facilities, there is a sense of improved and enhanced train journey experience. In the coming years, Indian Railways aims to provide world-class train journey experience to passengers by embracing technological advancements. With a focus on safety, comfort, and convenience, Indian Railways is aiming to transform its network, Rajesh Agrawal, Member Rolling Stock, Railway Board said at a CII event. Here are top 5 major initiatives on the railway front that are being planned for the coming years:
Enhancing passenger experience: According to Indian Railways, technology in the year 2020 is going to be a growth driver. As there is no shortage of coaches now, the focus will be on introducing SMART coaches on the Indian Railways network. Also, with modern features like CCTVs with facial recognition, emergency talk-back system, WiFi infotainment system, automatic plug-door and step control, etc. there will be a complete change in travel experience.
Introducing world-class train sets: For Indian Railways, the introduction of ‘Make in India’ semi-high speed Vande Bharat Express trains was the biggest success story of last year. This year as well as in the coming years, the national transporter plans to launch many other world-class train sets, improving the railway connectivity across the country. According to Rajesh Agrawal, the aim is to also start exporting trains.
Manufacturing of coaches: There has been an exponential growth in coach production. For the first time, Indian Railways has witnessed more supply than demand. The financial year 2018-19 saw the highest production of coaches in the last two decades, with a total of 5,836 coaches. The Modern Coach Factory (MCF) had doubled its production, last year. This year, MCF in Raebareli aims to triple its production of coaches.
Environmental impact: Indian Railways plans to focus on cleanliness of trains and stations. Beginning with the installation of 57 bio-toilets in 31 coaches in January 2011, Indian Railways has now successfully installed over 2.2 lakh bio-toilets covering about 61,500 passenger carrying coaches. Moreover, 950 railway stations have been provided with integrated mechanised cleaning till now. Also, 13 railway stations have achieved Green Certification and 85 railway stations have been certified for implementation of Environment Management System.
Freight logistics: The freight logistics of the national transporter is picking up, according to the Railway Board. The freight carrying capacity has been increased from 7 Million MT to 1 Billion MT. Meanwhile, Indian Railways has come up with a wagon design for new traffic streams, which includes bulk, cement and fly ash transportation, steel coil 1, steel coil 2, road railers, parcel wagon. A private parcel wagon design is also currently under consideration at RDSO. Additionally, a Smart Yard is likely to be introduced for maintenance of rolling stock.