The railways is planning to launch Vande Bharat Sleeper Coach and Vande Bharat Metros soon, Railway Board Secretary Milind Deouskar said on Thursday. “We are planning Vande Bharat Sleepers and Vande Bharat Metro trains, all of this to meet the throughput, speed, and convenience related expectations,” Deouskar said addressing the rail conference organised by the CII.
BEML chairman and managing director Shantanu Roy said that “if all goes well, we will come out with a world class unmatched travel experience with the first prototype (of Vande Bharat sleeper train) within this financial year itself”.
The BEML is a partner to developing the first sleeper Vande Bharat Train with the Integral Coach Factory, Chennai, and the Railway Board.
“Vande Bharat has been a game-changer for Indian commuter rail, and all of it started with Train 18,” Roy said.
Earlier this month, Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw had shared images of the ‘Concept train-Vande Bharat (sleeper version)’ on social media.
Each Vande Bharat Express sleeper train will be designed to achieve speeds of 160 km per hour and have 16 coaches with an approximate capacity to accommodate 887 passengers.
Roy estimated that the total opportunity size for the rail and metro segment that includes Vande Bharat trains and Metro tenders of Mumbai, Chennai and Patna could be upwards of Rs 2 lakh crore in the next seven years.
The Indian Railways has issued a production plan of 102 Vande Bharat rakes (35 in 2022-2023 and 67 in 2023-2024) as per the railways design within its production units (the Integral Coach Factory, the Rail Coach Factory and the Modern Coach Factory).
A total 75 Vande Bharat rakes are planned as chair car version and remaining planned as sleeper version.
The Indian Railways has also planned to manufacture 400 Vande Bharat trains (sleeper version) of three different technologies for which tenders have been floated to select technology partners for manufacturing within Indian Railways Production Units.