Indian Railways’ new Humsafar trains will come with USB charging points, baby nappy changing pads and information display screens. Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu on Wednesday inspected a new rake of Humsafar Express with additional features at Delhi Safdarjung Railway Station. First announced in Rail Budget 2016-17, Humsafar Express trains will be a fully air-conditioned third AC train service with an optional service for meals. Besides the nappy changing pads in two toilets per coach, Humsafar Express will also come fitted with CCTV surveillance systems. Humsafar Express was one of the four new train projects announced in 2016, along with Uday Express, Tejas Express and Antyodaya Express.
Here are 10 things to know on the Humsafar Express:
The cost of a Humsafar AC 3 Tier coach is estimated at Rs. 2.58 crore, as against Rs.2.39 crore for a normal LHB AC 3 Tier coach.
The new rake inspected by Mr Prabhu on Wednesday included many features in additional to those planned for the Humsafar Express. The new rake came with a single piece side lower berth, instead of a two-piece model previously. “Humsafar trains were already good, but we wanted to further improve the design for better passenger experience,” Mr Prabhu said on Wednesday.
The new coaches had a mobile charging point for each berth including USB charging points. Earlier, there were three chargers for eight passengers.
Each berth was provided with reading light, in contrast to only the lower berths previously.
Among some of the other features given in the new coaches were a convenient upper berth climbing arrangement, display monitor screens for the CCTV installed in the coach, and dustbins in each bay inside the coach.
In addition to these, according to a press release by the Ministry of Railways, all the existing features of Humsafar Express coaches will continue to be available.
Some of the features planned for the Humsafar Express include an anti-graffiti coating and distinctive 3D numbering on the exterior, colourfully coordinated seats, berths, partitions, curtains, improved/hygienic toilets and film type mirrors, deodorizers, dustbins and sleek bottle holders in the cabins.
Besides, the Humsafar Express coaches will also come with CCTV surveillance cameras in the common areas of coaches, integrated braille displays, hygienic lavatories with odour flushing systems, GPS-based passenger information systems, passenger announcement systems, fire and smoke detection systems, auto vending machine and mini pantries with ovens/fridges.
A total of 11 Humsafar trains have been announced by the railways ministry in the new time table, of which six are running with a composition of 16 AC 3 Tier coaches and 2 power cars, the press release noted.
The railway minister is scheduled to flag off two Humsafar Express trains – Tirupati-Jammu Tawi (train No. 22705/22706) and Howrah-Vijayawada (20889/20890) from Vijayawada on Thursday. The remaining Humsafar trains will also be introduced in due course, the ministry said. Indian Railways plans to manufacture 10 Humsafar rakes in the current financial year at Modern Coach Factory, Raebareli and Rail Coach Factory, Kapurthala.