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Indian Railways is working on a project that will change the way the common man travels in trains! By the end of this year, the prototype of a new airconditioned general second-class coach will be rolled out, learns TOI.
After introducing an Economy AC 3-tier coach, Indian Railways is now looking to revamp unreserved second-class coaches by making them airconditioned.
A host of other changes are also being planned in the coach to make train travel comfortable for the common man. The new AC general second-class coach will be manufactured at the Rail Coach Factory (RCF) in Kapurthala.
“This project will change the face of rail travel in India for the common man. Air-conditioned general second-class travel will become comfortable like never before,” Ravinder Gupta, GM of RCF told TOI.
The layout for the new AC general second class coach is being finalized and RCF is hopeful of rolling out a prototype by the end of this calendar year.
At present, the general second-class coach can seat up to 100 passengers and costs around Rs 2.24 crore to make. The new AC general second-class coach is expected to accommodate more passengers while offering better passenger amenities as well.
These coaches will be used for long-distance Mail/Express trains that can travel at 130 KMPH. Non-AC coaches cannot take speeds of more than 110 KMPH.
Indian Railways is upgrading the Golden Quadrilateral and its diagonals to take train speeds of 130 KMPH.
In line with that vision, sleepers and general coaches are being air-conditioned. Recently RCF rolled out the prototype of an Economy AC 3-tier coach that will replace sleeper class coaches in Mail/Express trains.
The Economy AC coach recently achieved speeds of 180 KMPH during its trial. Indian Railways will manufacture 248 Economy AC 3-tier coaches by the end of FY22. The production plan for AC general second-class coaches will be finalized once the layout and other designs are approved by the Railway Board.
The last time Indian Railways upgraded its general second-class coaches were with the introduction of Deen Dayalu coaches for unreserved passengers in 2016.
Deen Dayalu coaches offered several passenger amenities such as cushioned luggage racks, padded seats, coat hooks, aqua-guard style water filtration system, bio-toilets, more mobile charging points, toilet occupancy indicators, water level indicators, etc.