NEW DELHI: To provide better safety and ensure comfortable travel for passengers, Railways has decided to refurbish and retrofit 40,000 coaches at a cost of Rs 15000 crore in the next five years. The exercise will see improving interiors of coaches, making them disable friendly and adding safety features.
Railways Tuesday launched the Mission Retrofitment that will see retrofitment of Center Buffer Coupler with balanced draft gear that would add more to safety of the passengers. The mission is challenging for railways as it will be carried out without affecting the traffic operation.
Under the mission, it is planned to induct about 40,000 coaches with upgraded interiors by 2022-23. The tender for refurbishing of 6,700 coaches is likely to be out soon. Funds will drawn from various sources including Railway Safety Fund announced in the budget.
Railways will also rope in private players having expertise in the sector for the upgradation work as railway workshops cannot meet the entire demand.
“Mission Retro-Fitment is an ambitious program to upgrade the level of furnishing and amenities in the coaches of Indian Railways. This is one of the largest retro fitment projects in the world as Indian Railways’ 40,000 coaches will be refurbished and retrofitted in the next five years,” said Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu.
About 25,000 existing coaches will be upgraded and retrofitted with improved amenities and 15,000 new coaches will be manufactured with new features.
Refurbishing – Salient Points
World class ambience
Panels without visible screws, LED Lights, Modular toilets with concealed plumbing, Branded fittings, Powered venetian blinds and Anti-Graffiti coating.
Enhanced Passenger Safety
Fire and Smoke Detection System (in newly manufactured AC coaches), Double acting compartment door (in AC coaches), Rounded edges at most locations for injury-free.
Passenger Address and Passenger Information System, Braille Signage, Ergonomic design, increased number of mobile and laptop charging points.