Witnessing a surge in demand, the Railways has decided to run 80 additional trains—including a Vande Bharat Express, a Shatabdi train and a weekly Shramik Special—from September 12. Going ahead, the national transporter will also run “clones” of trains that see heavy demand to clear waiting lists.
“The average occupancy of the trains running right now has risen to 80-85 per cent. There are trains which are running with waiting lists as well. So we have decided to run 80 additional trains or 40 pairs,” VK Yadav, chairman and CEO of the Railway Board, said Saturday. “For any train where waiting lists are for over 10-12 days, we will run an additional ‘clone train’,”
Bookings will start on September 10. Most of these trains have a daily frequency; there are weekly and bi-weekly trains as well.
The resumed services include the Vande Bharat Express from Delhi to Varanasi and a host of trains on key routes connecting Bihar, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Tripura, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Assam, and West Bengal.
“Our future endeavour will be to keep monitoring the occupancy patterns of the trains so that whenever we witness a surge in demand for a particular train leading to waiting lists, we will run a clone train there to clear the rush,” Yadav said.
The weekly Shramik Special train has been rolled out between Valsad in Maharashtra and Muzaffarpur in Gujarat.
“We have selected these trains keeping the prevailing demand pattern in mind. Migrant labourers and others have been travelling on these routes,” he said.