Reaching a top speed of 160 kmph, India’s first semi-high speed train, Gatimaan Express, completed its maiden journey from Delhi to Agra in just 100 minutes, and returned in even less time.
With 237 passengers on board the train departed from Hazrat Nizamuddin station in New Delhi at 10:10 am and reached its destination Agra Cantonment at 11:50 am. Other trains between Delhi and Agra take anywhere between 2 to 3 hours to cover the distance.
At the Hazrat Nizamuddin station, passengers were greeted with red roses and chocolates.
With hotspot infotainment on board, upgraded food quality, a wide variety of menu for vegetarian and non-vegetarian passengers, hostesses on board, the train has much to offer.
“The service is much better. The food quality is very good. There should be more such trains,” said Ruchira, a passenger who hails from Kolkata.
Her views were supported by a 72-year-old man Subhash Sachdeva who claimed he had also witnessed the launch of Taj Express in 1964. “It is proud moment that India got its fastest train. The service is very good. I’m hopeful that India will get trains running at the speed of over 300 kmph.”
The train looks like a Shatabdi Express but with better services. There are two executive chair car coaches and eight AC chair car coaches. The total cost of the train is Rs 50 crore.
“The quality of the food is very good and it should be maintained in other trains irrespective of the cost. For such high speed trains, there should be good tracks, ” said another passenger Amit Bhojari.
“The train has specialised features to cater to every age group of citizens. From infotainment, upgraded menu to better service on board. If need be, coaches will be added in the train,” said Railways spokesperson Anil Saxena.
It was a proud moment for hostesses on the train. “We had a good experience. Passengers were very welcoming. The service should be extended to other trains as well,” said Maya and Laxmi.
And as they got down from the train after their fastest ever rail journey,most of the passengers said they expected more such trains in the future.