If you are one of the 15,000-plus people who ride the Deccan Queen between Mumbai and Pune daily, your trip time could soon be 15-20 minutes shorter.
As part of its conversion of the line from Direct Current (DC) to Alternating Current (AC), the Central Railway (CR) completed conversion between Pune and Lonavla on Thursday. This will help CR’s newer trains faster between Kalyan and Pune, which they couldn’t do until now because the existing DC supply did not allow that.
“The impact of this conversion will be long-term, with the Mumbai-Pune journey becoming faster,” said CR chief PRO, S. Mudgerikar. There are no plans yet to change the schedules.
CR has scheduled conversion work within Mumbai limits — between Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) and Thane — for the last phase. This is the most difficult part of the overall conversion plan because it involves working around the schedules of the high-density, thinly stretched local train services.
CR completed the Pune-Lonavla conversion after scheduling a five-hour block between the two stations, involving the cancellation of six trains to Pune, Karjat, Lonavla and Talegaon, apart from partial cancellations and diversions of a few other trains.
On November 28-29, CR scheduled a major block at Karjat for this work, which affected local and outstation train schedules.
It involved launching and moving the girder of a foot overbridge at Karjat, and the cancellation of eight trains from CST to Karjat and Khopoli as well as other outstation trains.