Pilgrimage and visits to Vaishno Devi is sxet to become much easier thanks to the Indian Railways which has announced its plans to start a Vande Bharat Express on Delhi-Katra route before the Navratras. This will be the second Vande Bharat Express to be launched by the Indian railways in the last few months.
The train will start form New Delhi and travel straight to Katra – eliminating the need for tourists and pilgrims to take a cab ride from Jammu to Karta to visit Vaishno Devi.
“The Delhi-Katra Vande Bharat Express has completed all the required trials, and will be functional before the festival season from October. He also added that 40 more such trains will be introduced with sleeper class by 2022,” said Railway Board Chairman, Vinod Kumar Yadav.
The scheduled departure for the train from New Delhi Railway station would be at ^ in the morning and is scheduled to reach Katra Katra station at 2 in the afternoon. The same train will return back to Delhi with passengers – leaving Katra at 3 in the afternoon and reach New Delhi at 11 in the night.
This Vande Bharat Express or Train 18 will be a semi-high speed train service which would herald a new age of comfort travelling on trains in India.
The Indian Railways is also hoping to make a profit out of the train because of the high volume of passengers in the Delhi to Katra route while the devotees and tourists ot Vaishno Devi, this new train would provide a faster and more convenient travel mode.
This new train service will also reduce travel time for the current 12 hours to 8 hours while the travelers will have to shell out Rs 1600 per person. According to reports, the fare for the executive chair car (ECC) class will be much higher at about Rs.3000.
But the train will have state of the art facilities including a well equipped pantry, comfortable seating arrangements, bio-vacuum type toilets, GPS-based audio-visual passenger information system and WiFi connectivity.
(Adapted from News18.com &FinancialExpress.com)