There’s good news for the lakhs of commuters on the Western Railway, as the WR has announced 55 more suburban services before January end, including more 15-car services and two women’s specials. The services are expected to accommodate five lakh more passengers.
WR also assured it would introduce suburban services in in the Virar-Dahanu section during this financial year, a long-standing demand of locals.
Most of these services will run on 25,000 volt alternating current rakes, and the first such rake is on the way to Mumbai from the Chennai-based Integral Coach Factory (ICF) and likely to reach the city by this weekend. This will be the first AC rake to run on the city’s suburban network and will make suburban journeys faster.
The new suburban services will be introduced over the course of the year and will start with the conversion of 26 nine-car services into 12-car services from Wednesday.
“First, except for 10 services (six run on CR and four on WR) all nine-car services on WR will be converted into 12-car trains. Also, the remaining four will be converted before this March-end, by introducing one more rake,” said Mahesh Kumar, general manager, WR.
Kumar added that by December-end, two more rakes would be introduced, including one 15-car and two 12-car trains and these will help the WR add 40-45 new services. One more rake would be introduced in January next year.
“Two more women’s specials will be introduced, in addition to the existing services,” Kumar said.
Kumar added that commuters wouldn’t have to wait beyond this financial year for the long-awaited Virar-Dahanu suburban services. “Suburban services till Dahanu will be introduced before March-end.”
Almost all the new services would run on AC rakes.
WR had placed an order with ICF to manufacture AC rakes in 2011 and the first rake, numbered 4001/4002, left for Mumbai on Monday morning. “It is expected to reach the city within next 3-4 days,” said a senior WR official requesting anonymity.