Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Minister of Railways Kumari Mamata Banerjee flagged off Sealdah- New Delhi non stop Bi-weekly ‘Duronto’ Express train form Sealdah Railway station today. This is first of the Duronto’ class of non-stop superfast passenger carrying train, heralding a new era of rail travel in the country ensuring better speed, comfort and security for passengers. The fare of the ‘Duronto’ trains will include the cost of meals. Such trains are first of its kind in the history of Railways. When inaugural Sealdah-New Delhi special ‘Duronto’ train 2259A/2260A chugged out from Sealdah station today, its moving wheels wrote a new chapter in the realm of rail travel which would change the country’s travel scenario in a big way.

‘Duronto’ trains are non-stop and take passenger from end to end. It means that passengers will not be allowed to embark or disembark at the intermediate stations. ‘Duronto’ will be of two types – one type is fully air-conditioned reserved train and other type is air-conditioned and non air –conditioned combo reserved train. Outer multi-colour art scheme and design of ‘Duronto’ coaches is distinct from the entire population of coaches of Indian Railways.

Regular service of 2259/2260 Sealdah-New Delhi train will take effect from 21.09.2009 from New Delhi and from 24.09.2009 from Sealdah. This train on its regular run will leave Sealdah every Thursday and Sunday at 6.40 P.M. and reach Delhi the next day at 11.00 A.M. In the reverse direction, the train on its regular run will leave New Delhi station every Friday and Monday at 8.05 P.M. and reach Sealdah the next day at around 12.25 P.M.

The second ‘Duronto’ train will be flagged-off by the Minister of Home Affairs, Shri P.Chidambram from Chennai on 21st September, 2009 which will reach Nizamuddin Railway Station, the next day i.e. on September 22, 2009.

‘The introduction of this class of trains was announced for the first time in the Railway Budget 2009-10 speech delivered in the Parliament by the Minister of Railways Kumari Mamata Banerjee in July this year. In all total 12 ‘Duronto’ trains will be introduced this year.

The Sealdah-Delhi ‘Duronto’ is fully air-conditioned and a fully reserved train and will cover the distance of 1,454 kms. between Sealdah and New Delhi in around 1630 hours which will be around 1.30 hours less than the corresponding Rajdhani train running on the same route. The train has one AC-I coach, three AC-II coaches, four AC-III coaches and five economy AC-III Coaches besides a pantry and generator car. With the launch of this ‘Duronto’, a new AC travel class called ‘AC Economy Class’ is also making its debut on Indian Railways. Fare structure (inclusive of food) from Sealdah to New Delhi and from New Delhi to Sealdah are: Rs. 3295/- for AC 1st Class, Rs. 1880/- for AC2-Tier, Rs 1390/- for AC3-Tier and Rs. 1335/- for AC Economy Class. Booking of this train including the special inaugural run has become available at all Computerised Reservation Offices from 17.09.2009.

Initially, 2269/2270 Chennai-Nizamuddin non-stop ‘Duronto’ is being introduced as a weekly train, leaving Chennai on its regular run every Monday and Nizamuddin every Tuesday. In the Chennai-Nizamuddin sector, the train on its regular run will leave Chennai at 6.40 A.M. and reach Nizamuddin the next day at 10.35 P.M. In the reverse direction, the train will leave Nizamuddin at 4 P.M. and reach Chennai the next day at 8.10 P.M. The fully reserved train will have both air-conditioned and non-air-conditioned coaches which will include two AC-II+AC-III combo coaches, two AC-III coaches and 8 Sleeper class coaches.

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