On Monday, the much-awaited high-speed Train 18 was rolled out. Train 18 has been touted as the replacement of Shatabdi Express. A similar high-speed train that will replace the Rajdhanis is now the focus of the Indian Railways. Train 20, expected to be rolled out by 2020 is the next-generation sleeper class train that will replace the premier express.
Train 20 is being developed under the Make in India initiative and will be developed at the Integral Coach Factory in Chennai. As per reports Train 20 will have an aluminium body and fully air-conditioned interiors. It will be operated by a self-propulsion module and could become the country's fastest train with a potential speed of 160 kmph.
There will be CCTV cameras, diffused lighting, automatic doors and footsteps and a GPS-based passenger information system. According to a report in Livemint, Train 20 will have next-gen sleeper cars.
Its counterpart, Train 18 will replace the Shatabdi Express that has been running for the past 30 years. Loaded with several state-of-the-art features, the Train 18 too has a potential speed of 160 kmph. The train has 16 coaches -- two of which are executive-class.
Train 18 was built at a cost of Rs 100 crore and is India's first long-distance train without a separate locomotive. It was flagged off by Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani. It will now undergo trials in the coming months.
"It is a matter of pride that India has made such a train and that too, the ICF has done it within 18 months," Lohani told reporters. "Within 2018-19 production year, another unit of the train would be manufactured and four more units would be manufactured by end of 2019-20 production year," he added.
The government wants to replace old trains with new hi-tech trains. It has already asked all zonal railway general managers to work on increasing the speed of long-distance passenger trains by 5 kmph every year, thus reaching the target of a 25kmph increase in speed by 2022.