Following chief minister Prithviraj Chavan's suggestion to make train travel less strenuous, the Central Railway has readied a suburban train with cushioned seats in all compartments. However, the train is parked at a Central Railway yard for over a month, awaiting suitable VIPs to inaugurate it.
The suburban trains have cushioned seats only in first-class compartments, while those in second-class ones have uncomfortable hard tops. In a meeting with Union minister of state KH Muniyappa last October, Chavan had suggested that seats in all compartments should have cushions.
Accordingly, CR authorities replaced the hard-top seats in second-class compartments in one of the new rakes on pilot basis. The upgrading was done at CR's Matunga workshop at an estimated cost of Rs. 27 lakh.
However, the new seats are gathering dust as the train is stationed at the Kurla car-shed for over a month.
"All field trials of the local train have been completed and it is waiting for commissioning since a long time," said a source.
The source said the CR management is keen to get the train inaugurated by the railway minister and the chief minister, but getting the two VIPs is a difficult task due to their busy schedules.
The CR authorities had planned to put the train on tracks on May 20.
"It will be commissioned soon," said a CR spokesperson, but avoided elaborating on reasons for the delay.