With the firming up of the deal between the Russian rolling-stock major Transmashholding's (TMH) subsidiary, Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd (RVNL) and Locomotive Electric Systems and forming up a special purpose vehicle (SPV) Kinet Railway Solutions Limited, the process of manufacture of sleeper class Vande Bharat trains is back on the track.
Ending the days of uncertainty and speculations, RVNL, the Railways PSU, has agreed to be junior partner as per original agreement and came on the board to join hands with the Russian rolling stock company for going ahead with the Rs 35,000 crore Vande Bharat project.
The Railways has awarded contract for manufacturing of 200 Sleeper Vande Bharat trains out of which TMH-RVNL will make 120 and Titagarh-BEML to make 80 such trains.
The first Vande Bharat train with AC sleeper facility is expected to roll out in March-April 2024 from the Bharat Earth Movers Limited (BEML) factory in Bangalore.
The prototype of sleeper Vande Bharat train will have 1AC, 2AC and 3AC compartments like the Rajdhani Express trains' composition.
According to the Integral Coach Factory (ICF) at Chennai, the design of the sleeper edition Vande Bharat train, is in the final stage and the prototype is expected to be ready by next year March-April from BEML.
ICF had given the order for manufacturing of 10 Vande Bharat trains with sleeper facility to the state-owned BEML.
However, the Railways maintain that the design for Sleeper Vande Bharat finalised by BEML will not be binding for the TMH-RVNL consortium. They can have their own design if they want. But these designs are to be approved by the RDSO.
The newly formed SPV will be manufacturing and supplying 120 Vande Bharat-electric passenger sleeper-trainsets within the stipulated time frame and will also be running maintenance services of the train sets for 35 years.
Currently the Vande Bharat trains with seating facilities are being produced at ICF. There will be no Vande Bharat trains with seating facility after 75 of such trains.
According to the Railways, the new sleeper variant of the Vande Bharat Express, promising faster and more comfortable overnight travel for passengers.
The consortium of TMH-RVNL would manufacture 120 Vande Bharat trains at the railway facilities at Latur.
The Vande Bharat sleeper train is expected to be of superior quality as compared to Rajdhani trains in terms of features, average speed, and maintenance.
The TMH-RVNL Vande Bharat project is expected to begin by the end of August and the first train will be rolling out in the next two years.
The introduction of sleeper Vande Bharat trains aims to offer passengers faster and more comfortable overnight travel options.
Promising a bright future for Indian travellers, the ambitious Vande Bharat project is expected to transform overnight travel experiences for passengers.
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