BOTH CENTRAL and Western railways have been asked to deliberate on the required specifications of the new air-conditioned (AC) rakes to be procured under Mumbai Urban Transport project (MUTP) III. The CR and WR have been asked to comment on the required compartmentalisation of rakes for different segments of commuters and other technical details. Last month, the state and the railways had given an in-principle approval on air-conditioning of the 47 new rakes that will have automatic door closing. Officials said tenders for manufacturing the rakes could only be floated after details on specifications of the rakes were finalised.
In a meeting between the railways, Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation, the nodal agency for MUTP, and officials from Research Designs and Standard Organisation on Tuesday, the railways were asked for feedback. “We have received an overall consensus on air-conditioning of rakes and automatic door closure from each agency involved. The meeting was aimed at getting their feedback on other technical details. Height of rakes and absence of rooftop ventilation were issues that got immediate feedback,” an MRVC official said.
Officials aim to increase the coaches dedicated to women to three from 2.5 at present, include a separate compartment for vendors and the differently-abled. “As the rakes will have a vestibule design, compartmentalisation was an issue that will need deliberation. We asked their comments on the absence of a first or second class coach in the respective type of design. Comments on emulating the metro model of seating arrangement were also sought,” the official said.
Other technical details for the design of motor cabin coach and power coaches were also discussed. “As the deadline to finalise the specifications is July-end, we would require to submit Mumbai division’s comments to the Railway Board at the earliest. We are also expecting an official approval for air-conditioning of the rakes at the earliest,” a senior MRVC official said. Ravinder Bhakar, Chief Public Relations Officer, WR, said: “We will conduct more meetings with other departments to our give feedback.”
Train diversion plan
In an attempt to decongest Kalyan railway junction, the CR has proposed to divert few trains towards Ulhasnagar before Kalyan station after the plan of re-modelling Kalyan station yard is through. It will relieve the bottle-neck due to simultaneous halts of mail-express and suburban trains. “The plan is to divert few trains in the south-east section without waiting for longer at Kalyan,” Ravinder Goyal, Divisional Railway Manager, CR, said.