Central Railway to quickly go 15-car on quick hall, plans Rs 900 crore challenge

MUMBAI: has drawn up an ambitious Rs 900-crore plan to augment all 12-car rakes to 15-car on the fast corridor. The plan involves increasing platform lengths and procurement of coaches. The plan has been sent to (MRVC).
At present, CR runs 16 15-car services on its fast corridor, but only between and Kalyan. The services were introduced in October 2012. Beyond Kalyan, towards Karjat and Kasara, the length of platforms is not enough to accommodate 15-car trains. Also, at CSMT, there is only platform—no. 7—that can accommodate 15-car trains.

A senior CR official said, “It is an ambitious project because it involves extending platforms, besides shifting signals posts, moving crossovers and changing overhead equipment.”

The line bifurcates after Kalyan—one to Karjat and other to Kasara. The important stations on Karjat line are Ambernath and Badlapur while on the Kasara side, there is Titwala and Asangaon.

The augmentation work will be carried out in phases. “In phase I, work will be carried out up to Badlapur and in the subsequent phase, up to Asangaon,” said an official. The work will also include setting up of stabling lines big enough to accommodate 15-car trains near Ambernath and Badlapur. Also, pit lines will have to be developed for maintenance-related activities.”

In December 2015, in the aftermath of some accidents due to overcrowding, the railway board had asked Central Railway and Western Railway to prepare action plans for introduction of more 15-car services. The railway board had sent across the minutes of a meeting held between the then railway minister and some MPs soon after a video of a youth falling from a running train on CR went viral.

However, at that time, CR had resisted the 15-car rakes’ proposal on the grounds that since the longer trains have 90 kmph speed limit as against 100 kmph for 12-car. It had said that reduced speed may lead to cancellation of some services.

A CR official said, “Speed restrictions can be relaxed due to modification in infrastructure. Also, Bombardier rakes will be used in the future; they are much more efficient.”

The official said, “We may ask the MRVC to include this project in MUTP 3A.”

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