AHMEDABAD: Amid fanfare, the Ahmedabad- Mumbai Tejas Express, the second premium train to be run by Railway subsidiary IRCTC, was flagged off by Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani here on Friday morning.
Equipped with modern facilities, the train departed from Ahmedabad at 10.43 am and will reach Mumbai after 6.30 hours, covering a distance of nearly 500km.
This is the second premium train to be operated by IRCTC, the Railway firm that handles catering, tourism and online ticketing.
The first such train, between Delhi and Lucknow, was flagged off last year.
The Delhi-Lucknow Tejas Express is also operated by IRCTC, which is listed on stock exchanges.
The Railways has proposed to run 150 such premium trains across the country.
The commercial run of the Ahmedabad-Mumbai Tejas Express will start from January 19 from here, the Railways said.
The train was shown green signal with a lot of fanfare at Ahmedabad station where it was decorated with flowers and garlands on the exterior.
Artists performed traditional music and dance on the platform before the departure of the train.
Railway Minister Piyush Goyal, who was to attend the flagging off ceremony, could not arrive here due to bad weather, BJP MP Kirit Solanki said.
"It is a matter of pride that this semi high-speed, second Tejas Express train has been flagged off between Ahmedabad and Mumbai. This will benefit both states," Rupani said after flagging off the train.
"Work on the bullet train is also going on the Mumbai- Ahmedabad route," he said.
The train (82902/82901) will operate on the Ahmedabad- Mumbai route six days a week with Thursday kept as off-day for maintenance activity.
The fully air-conditioned train has two executive class chair cars, having 56 seats each, and eight chair cars, having a capacity of 78 seats each.
The total carrying capacity of the train is 736 passengers.
IRCTC will compensate passengers for delays.
It will provide Rs 100 to each passenger in case delay is more than one hour and Rs 250 if the delay exceeds two hours.
The train will start its journey at Ahmedabad at 06:40 hours and reach Mumbai Central at 13.10 hours with scheduled commercial halts at Nadiad, Vadodara, Bharuch, Surat, Vapi and Borivali stations.
For the return journey, the train will leave Mumbai Central at 15:40 hours and reach Ahmedabad at 21:55 hours.
The train's fares will be dynamic in nature keeping in mind the prevailing bus, taxi, rail and air rates on the route.
It will have different series of fares for lean, busy and festive seasons.
Further, the train's fares will be on a point-to-point basis and bookings can be done only online 60 days in advance.
Meals will be served by on-board service staff and tea and coffee vending machines will be available inside the train.
Besides state-of-the-art interiors, the train has personalised reading lights, mobile charging points, CCTV cameras, bio-toilets, LED TV sets and automatic doors.(THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS)