The new Linke Holfmann Busch (LHB) double-decker train, which is the first of its kind to be introduced in South India between Chennai and Bangalore, made its trial run on Sunday.
The train, announced in the 2012-13 budget, is the third double-decker train in the country. The other two are running on the Jaipur-Delhi Sarai Rohilla and Howrah-Dhanbad routes.
Senior divisional commercial manager N Ramesh, who came to see the new rake (train) at the Bangalore City Railway Station, said, “Research Design and Standards Organisation will conduct trials by running the train for a week. This is to see if the new rake is compatible on the route before handing it over to the operations department. The operations department of the South Western Railways and Southern Railway will conduct trials for one week before introducing it as a regular train.”
The new train will have a composition of 11 coaches, each with a seating capacity of 120. Initially, the train is expected to run with eight coaches. Each coach will have a middle deck at the entry points and the middle deck will branch out to upper and lower decks.
At 4.366 metres, the new rake is marginally higher than the other LHB rakes, including the Shatabdi rake, which stands at 4.025 metres.
Ramesh said a tentative schedule had already been worked out and according to it, the train would leave Chennai at 7.25 am and arrive at Bangalore City Railway Station by 1.20 pm. On the return journey, the train would leave Bangalore city at 2.40 pm and reach Chennai at 8.45 pm.
As the train will take less than six hours for a one-way travel, this will be the fastest train between Bangalore and Chennai. The train will briefly stop at Bangalore Cantonment, Krishnarajapuram, Bangarpet, Jolarpettai, Ambur, Katpadi, Arakonam and Perumbur railway stations.
According to RDSO officials, who are conducting the trail run, the train did not have any problems while reaching Bangalore.
The present railway fare from Bangalore to Chennai in express trains is `440 for adults and `290 for male senior citizens and `250 for female senior citizens and children.
It has to be seen if the existing fares will be revised for the new train.