Your wait for an air-conditioned suburban train may soon be over. After a delay of several years, a new air-conditioned local train for Mumbai is ready and will reach the city in three to four days.
Railway sources said that Chennai-based Integral Rail Factory (ICF) has dispatched it to Mumbai after a flagging-off ceremony there.
The air-conditioned local is expected to make suburban commute comfortable for those willing to pay more.
The blue and silver train will first ply on the harbour line of Central Railway.
Commuters have been waiting for the air-conditioned train since 2011-12 when it was first announced in the railway budget. However, the local has missed several deadlines.
Fitted with electronic system developed by Bharat Heavy Electric Limited, it is the first indigenous suburban Electric Multiple Unit (EMU) developed by Indian Railway. Vestibules connect the 12 coaches, which have an automatic door-closure system. The train can seat 1,028 and 4,964 can travel standing.
The train was shown green flag from the Perambur factory of ICF in Chennai.
“After the flag-off, the train was handed over to Southern Railway, which will dispatch it to Mumbai,” said a senior official of ICF.
Railway officials and commuters’ groups were doubtful whether the new local will be ready on time.
Subhash Gupta, a commuter activist said, “The train being dispatched from Chennai is like a dream come true.”
The train will go through various safety trials before it is open to the public. According to railway officials it may take three to four months for all the tests.