Photos: Deccan Queen, a Pune-Mumbai icon enters 90th year on the tracks

The introduction of ‘’Deccan Queen’’ between the two premier cities of Maharashtra on 1st June 1930 was a major landmark in the history of the Great Indian Peninsula (GIP) Railway, the forerunner of the Central Railway. As Deccan Queen entered its 90th year of plying goods and commuters between the two cities on Saturday, celebrations at both ends were the order of the day. But officials also indicted that despite its age the train is in for some upgrades in the form on newer coaches and a trial implementation of the push and pull technique which will reduce the train’s travel time.

UPDATED ON JUN 03, 2019 09:58 AM IST 8 Photos
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People celebrate the Pune-Mumbai Deccan Queen’s 90th year in service at Pune railway station in Pune on June 1. The introduction of ‘’Deccan Queen’’ between the two premier cities of Maharashtra on 1st June 1930 was a major landmark in the history of the Great Indian Peninsula (GIP) Railway, the forerunner of the Central Railway. (HT Photo)

People celebrate the Pune-Mumbai Deccan Queen’s 90th year in service at Pune railway station in Pune on June 1. The introduction of ‘’Deccan Queen’’ between the two premier cities of Maharashtra on 1st June 1930 was a major landmark in the history of the Great Indian Peninsula (GIP) Railway, the forerunner of the Central Railway. (HT Photo)

UPDATED ON JUN 03, 2019 09:58 AM IST
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People take pictures of the train’s signage on its 90th birthday run in Pune. When it began chugging down the tracks, the Deccan Queen was the first deluxe train introduced on the railway to serve two important cities of the region and was aptly named after Pune, which is also known as “Queen of Deccan’’ (Dakkhan ki Rani). (HT Photo)

People take pictures of the train’s signage on its 90th birthday run in Pune. When it began chugging down the tracks, the Deccan Queen was the first deluxe train introduced on the railway to serve two important cities of the region and was aptly named after Pune, which is also known as “Queen of Deccan’’ (Dakkhan ki Rani). (HT Photo)

UPDATED ON JUN 03, 2019 09:58 AM IST
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A uniformed band livens the mood during the celebrations at Pune railway station. Coinciding with this iconic Pune-Mumbai train completing 89 years and entering its 90th year, Central Railway has elaborate plans that will see the train upgraded. German-make coaches and a reduction in the train’s travel time by adding push and pull engines on both sides of the train are some of the planed attractions. (HT Photo)

A uniformed band livens the mood during the celebrations at Pune railway station. Coinciding with this iconic Pune-Mumbai train completing 89 years and entering its 90th year, Central Railway has elaborate plans that will see the train upgraded. German-make coaches and a reduction in the train’s travel time by adding push and pull engines on both sides of the train are some of the planed attractions. (HT Photo)

UPDATED ON JUN 03, 2019 09:58 AM IST
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Initially, the train was introduced with two rakes of seven coaches each, one of which was painted in silver with scarlet mouldings and the other with royal blue with gold lines. Presently Deccan Queen (12123/12124) runs with 17 coaches, including four air-conditioned chair cars, one buffet car, 10 second class chair cars and two second class cum brake vans. (Shankar Narayan / HT Archive)

Initially, the train was introduced with two rakes of seven coaches each, one of which was painted in silver with scarlet mouldings and the other with royal blue with gold lines. Presently Deccan Queen (12123/12124) runs with 17 coaches, including four air-conditioned chair cars, one buffet car, 10 second class chair cars and two second class cum brake vans. (Shankar Narayan / HT Archive)

UPDATED ON JUN 03, 2019 09:58 AM IST
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Last year, a Library on wheels was also introduced by the Central Railway in the train to celebrate ‘Vachan Prerna Diwas’ to mark the birth anniversary of Dr APJ Abdul Kalam. Indian railways has decided to operate the Pune-Mumbai Intercity express using the push and pull technology on a trial basis from May 31 and June 6. (Bhushan Koyande / HT Archive)

Last year, a Library on wheels was also introduced by the Central Railway in the train to celebrate ‘Vachan Prerna Diwas’ to mark the birth anniversary of Dr APJ Abdul Kalam. Indian railways has decided to operate the Pune-Mumbai Intercity express using the push and pull technology on a trial basis from May 31 and June 6. (Bhushan Koyande / HT Archive)

UPDATED ON JUN 03, 2019 09:58 AM IST
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The Deccan Queen is ceremonially anointed before it departs for Mumbai from Pune on Saturday. Harsha Shah, President of the Railway Pravasi Group who has been travelling on Deccan Queen for 50 years, said, “A lot of people are emotionally attached to Deccan Queen. I have been celebrating the train’s birthday since I was 10.” (HT Photo)

The Deccan Queen is ceremonially anointed before it departs for Mumbai from Pune on Saturday. Harsha Shah, President of the Railway Pravasi Group who has been travelling on Deccan Queen for 50 years, said, “A lot of people are emotionally attached to Deccan Queen. I have been celebrating the train’s birthday since I was 10.” (HT Photo)

UPDATED ON JUN 03, 2019 09:58 AM IST
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People celebrate the train’s birthday with a cake in Mumbai. Shah said, “When the train was introduced in 1930, it had dressing rooms, bathrooms, salon, dining car among others. It was also used to transport horses of the British army and citizens between Pune-Mumbai.” (Kunal Patil / HT Photo)

People celebrate the train’s birthday with a cake in Mumbai. Shah said, “When the train was introduced in 1930, it had dressing rooms, bathrooms, salon, dining car among others. It was also used to transport horses of the British army and citizens between Pune-Mumbai.” (Kunal Patil / HT Photo)

UPDATED ON JUN 03, 2019 09:58 AM IST
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Celebrations all around on the train’s arrival in Mumbai. By 1950, Shah said, change was in the air and only the dining car was retained. In 1987, the entire train, including the engines, were painted white; however, eventually the colour was also changed. During the upgrade trial the train will leave Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus at 6.45am instead of 6.40am and arrive in Pune at 9.20am instead of 9.57am. (Kunal Patil / HT Photo)

Celebrations all around on the train’s arrival in Mumbai. By 1950, Shah said, change was in the air and only the dining car was retained. In 1987, the entire train, including the engines, were painted white; however, eventually the colour was also changed. During the upgrade trial the train will leave Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus at 6.45am instead of 6.40am and arrive in Pune at 9.20am instead of 9.57am. (Kunal Patil / HT Photo)

UPDATED ON JUN 03, 2019 09:58 AM IST
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