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New Delhi (Metro Rail & Steel): Considering the suggestions of the passengers who traveled in the Vande Bharat Express, the Railways has decided to make a total of 25 improvements keeping in mind the suggestion of travelers to make the journey more comfortable and accessible to the passengers. It will include some passenger-friendly features, and technical and safety-related enchantments as well.
The changes include an improved aerosol-based fire detection and suppression system inside the coaches, better seating, extended footrests and aesthetic colors in the executive chair car, improved accessibility to mobile charging points under seats, change in wash basin design in toilets along with improved lighting, improved grip, etc, said a press release on Wednesday.
Other changes being made are – provision of magazine bags for end seats, standardization of colors for toilet panels, provision of securing point for wheelchairs of disabled passengers, improved hammer box cover for easy access in case of emergency, borderless emergency talk-back unit to interact with the driver, hinged transparent door assembly for the fire extinguishers in coaches for better visibility, smooth-touch controls for luggage rack lights and so on.
New Delhi (Metro Rail & Steel): PM Narendra Modi will flag off nine new Vande Bharat Trains on September 24, Sunday. As per the information, these are semi-high-speed trains and will be eight coaches long. The nine routes that will be flagged off on Sunday are – Ranchi-Howrah, Patna-Howrah, Vijayawada-Chennai, Tirunelveli-Chennai, Rourkela- Puri, Udaipur-Jaipur, Kasaragod-Thiruvananthapuram, Jamnagar-Ahmedabad and Hyderabad-Bengaluru.
Along with this PM will flag off 7 new routes as well for the Vande Bharat Express Train on the same day. With this Kerala and Odisha will receive their second Vande Bharat Express train soon.
At present, 25 Vande Bharat Express trains run across India which covers 50 routes, 25 each up and down. Now with the incorporation of these 9 new routes, there will be a total of 34 operational routes of Vande Bharat Express Train in our country which is spread all across the nation. These Vande Bharat Express trains include the latest features of the new orange and white color combination.
Shimla (Metro Rail & Steel) : After a gap of seventy days, on Wednesday, the toy train service between Kalka and Solan was resumed. Damage to the railway tracks during the monsoon season accompanied by heavy rainfalls, landslides, fallen trees, and heavy boulders at 175 locations is the reason why the plying of the heritage train between Kalka and Shimla was put on hold since 9 July.
The toy train service got heritage status from UNESCO as it passes through the alluring valleys of Himachal Pradesh. Travelers get mesmerized after seeing the serene beauty of nature. On Monday and Tuesday, railways conducted a trial run of goods trains on the track. After the successful trial run of the goods train, the railways finally decided to operate the passenger train on the tracks.
The first train after the restoration carried at least 10-15 passengers which were chugged off from Kalka railway station for Solan.
In receiving this prestigious accolade, She expressed her gratitude and reiterated her commitment to furthering the quality of life of People in India. “I am deeply honoured to receive this honour, which is a testament to the collective efforts of the Team JSP Foundation. We remain committed to creating a brighter and more inclusive future of the underprivileged and socially vulnerable people of our Country and across the Globe. This recognition strengthens our resolve to continue to work tirelessly for those deprived and disadvantaged”.
As the Chairperson of JSP Foundation, Smt. Jindal has consistently championed various initiatives and programs that span across various social causes, including quality education, healthcare, skill development and women’s empowerment and social inclusion, mainly in Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Jharkhand, and other various parts of India. Her social endeavours have touched the lives of millions and continue to serve as an inspiration to many.
In addition to her humanitarian efforts, Smt. Jindal has made a name for herself as a world-class Kuchipudi danseuse, helping to spread global awareness on Indian dance and culture throughout the world. She has also served as the chairperson of National Bal Bhavan and the founder president of Young FICCI. Presently, she also serves as the Chancellor of OP Jindal University in Chhattisgarh. She has received numerous prestigious awards, including the CSR Times Lifetime Achievement Award, the Golden Peacock Award in London, the Mahatma Gandhi Award, and the Ekalavya Award from CMO Asia in Singapore.
India’s fastest train, the Vande Bharat Express is running successfully on 25 routes across India. Every single one of these semi-high-speed trains was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself, revealing the importance of these modern and fast trains for the current BJP regime.
However, there has been a dry spell of two months ever since the last Vande Bharat train was flagged off by PM Modi in July 2023. In between, Ashwini Vaishnaw, Railway Minister of India revealed the new Saffron coloured Vande Bharat Express.
Media reports now suggest that the Indian Railways is now preparing to launch 9 Vande Bharat Express trains soon. The rakes to run on these 9 trains are being readied by the Integral Coach Factory (ICF) Chennai. Of these, poll-bound Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh will get the maximum trains. The Ministry of Railways is expected to host a big event and launch a number of trains together.
Tentative upcoming Vande Bharat Express routes:
- Route 1: Indore – Jaipur Vande Bharat Express
- Route 2: Jaipur-Udaipur Vande Bharat Express
- Route 3: Puri – Rourkela Vande Bharat Express
- Route 4: Patna-Howrah Vande Bharat Express
- Route 5: Jaipur-Chandigarh Vande Bharat Express
These five routes of the Vande Bharat Express have already been assigned, while three routes have been assigned to the Southern Railways, however, the names are yet to be finalised. It’s not yet clear where the last Vande Bharat Express will be deployed.
Indian Railways is working in full swing to establish Charlapalli Railway Station in Telangana as a satellite coaching terminal. This ambitious project will aid high traffic demand by improving the connectivity of the twin cities – Hyderabad and Secunderabad. The station falls under the administrative jurisdiction of South Central Railway’s Secunderabad Division.
Once completed, the Charlapalli Railway station will become the fourth central passenger terminal in the twin cities. The zonal railway is developing this new terminal with modern facilities on par with airports.
The Railway Board had sanctioned a budget of Rs 221 crores for the development of Charlapalli Railway station as an alternate coaching terminal. In the Union Budget 2023-24, the national transporter has allocated Rs 82 crores for the Charlapalli satellite terminal development.
The South Central Railway has already awarded the tender for the execution of Phase 1 and II works. The work is targeted to be completed by the end of this year. The station also comes under MMTS Phase – II project and several facilities are coming up as part of it also. It has also been proposed to build an “All Weather covered shed” for pit lines at Charlapalli. For this, the zonal railway has sent a proposal to the Railway Board for sanction.
H2 Green Steel has raised ‘about €1.5 billion’ in equity funding to fund the build of the world’s first large-scale green steel plant and Europe’s first giga-scale electrolyser.
The plant is being built in Boden, Sweden and will deliver steel with ‘up to 95 percent less CO2 emissions compared to steel produced with traditional blast furnace technology’. The plant will be hydrogen-powered rather than using coal – this is where the giga-scale electrolyser kicks in, it will produce hydrogen using electricity from renewable resources. Ground was broken on the site in summer 2022, the fresh capital will allow the project to move on from the groundworks stage.
To date H2 Green Steel has been heavily financed by equity funding, raising €1.8 billion over three rounds. Previous rounds include a Series A €86 million round in May 2021 and a €260 million Series B1 in October 2022. In debt funding the firm has had access to over €3.5 billion and says it has renewed commitment letters in July 2023.
“The calibre of investors that are backing us is impressive. Some of the most professional institutions, investors and industrial companies globally are part of this round and we are proud that they all share our commitment to sustainability as their true north. €1.5 billion is the largest private placement in Europe this year and the appetite to invest in us proves both our solid business case and the market demand for green steel,” says Henrik Henriksson, CEO of H2 Green Steel.
India is in talks with world leaders from countries such as the US and Saudi Arabia to discuss a joint infrastructure deal that will connect Gulf and Arab countries via a network of railways and ports, as reported by Reuters.
The deal could be a key initiative in the Middle East, where China’s influence is expanding, the American newsletter Axios said in its report. The Middle East is also a key part of Beijing’s Belt and Road vision, it noted.
The Biden administration is aiming to finalise a large-scale deal with Saudi Arabia, possibly including a normalization agreement with Israel before the 2024 Presidential election campaign takes over Biden’s schedule. The project, according to Axios, is anticipated to link Arab nations in the Levant and Gulf through a railway network, which will also extend to India via Gulf seaports.
This initiative was proposed during discussions going on for the past 18 months at the I2U2 forum, which included countries like the US, Israel, the UAE, and India. It was established in late 2021 to discuss strategic infrastructure projects in the Middle East and counterbalance Beijing’s growing regional influence.
Israel proposed the idea of connecting the region via railways during the I2U2 meetings over the past year, with part of the plan involving India’s expertise in large infrastructure projects. The Biden administration later expanded the idea to include Saudi Arabia’s participation, as reported by Axios.
Indian Railways is all set to launch a third line between Haridaspur and Byree railway stations in Odisha. According to an official, the third line between Haridaspur and Byree railway stations in Odisha on the Howrah-Chennai main line was commissioned on Tuesday (September 5).
The 16.80 km Haridaspur-Byree railway line constitutes an integral segment of the ongoing crucial Bhadrak-Nergundi third-line initiative.
Meanwhile, the Commissioner of Railway Safety (CRS) for the South Eastern Circle, Kolkata, conducted an extensive inspection of this section. During the inspection, a meticulous assessment of all safety aspects took place, and a speed trial was also executed to assess the feasibility of train traffic.
General manager Manoj Sharma advised officials to expedite the completion of various ongoing projects within the East Coast Railway’s jurisdiction. Furthermore, he has encouraged officials to collaborate with stakeholders, including state government officials, to facilitate the timely execution of these projects.