Infrastructure at rail workshop in Mysore being ramped up

The infrastructure at the Central Railway Workshop in Mysore city is being ramped up for undertaking the periodic overhauling and maintenance of Linke Holfmann Busch (LHB) coaches that constitute the rakes of the Shatabdi and the Rajdhani trains.

This is part of the capacity building of the railway workshops across the country as the Indian Railways plans to substitute the conventional Integral Coach Factory-designed coaches with the German technology-based LHB coaches for most Indian trains in the long run.

“The Mysore workshop has been upgraded to handle the LHB coaches and 29 such coaches have been overhauled here since October 2012. The workshop’s installed capacity at present is to take up maintenance of eight LHB coaches a month or 96 coaches a year. This is in addition to the periodic overhauling and maintenance of 70 ICF-designed coaches a month, of which 10 will be AC coaches. The workshop also takes up intermediate overhauling of 40 coaches a month,” Mr. U. Subba Rao, chief workshop manager, said.

Though the LHB coaches are expensive (One LHB coach costs about Rs. 1.8 crore while an for an ICF coach costs Rs. 65 lakh), they are found to be more efficient and capable of higher speeds ranging from 160 kmph to 200 kmph and reckoned to be safer while providing greater ride comfort.

The LHB coaches at present are air-conditioned, the Railways has designed non-AC LHB coaches as well and they will supplant the conventional ICF coaches in future, according to Mr. Subba Rao.

V. Suresh, senior section engineer, Bogie Repair Shop, said there were nearly 100 LHB coaches operating out of the Bangalore Railway Division but as Bangalore does not have a railway workshop, infrastructure had been put in place at the Central Workshop at Ashokapuram here for coach maintenance.

“The load will be shared between the Mysore and the Hubli workshops, and we have presented a proposal for capacity upgrading,” Mr. Rao added.


The staff here have designed a hydraulic press, reckoned to be the most important machinery for coach maintenance. While a few testing equipment have been procured, there are other requirements such as a surface traverser for shifting coaches, which costs around Rs. 3.5 crore, he said. A proposal has been submitted for the construction of a new building at a cost of Rs. 5 crore.

Conventional ICF coaches require periodic overhauling once every 18 months against once in 72 months for LHB coaches. The workshop staff have been sent for training at Lower Parel in Mumbai and at the Jagadhri workshop in Haryana where they have been working on LHB coaches for almost 10 years, according to Mr. Rao.

The Rail Coach Factory at Kapurthala, Punjab, manufactured 460 LHB coaches last year and the ICF at Perambur, Tamil Nadu, was scaling up the LHB production. The new factory established at Raebareli, Uttar Pradesh, was exclusively meant for the production of LHB coaches, Mr. Rao added.

Railways to celebrate 40 years of Rajdhani trains

The main function will be held at Howrah station, with Railways planning to recreate a festive-like atmosphere at the station complex on March 3, the day when it was flagged off from there.

The country’s first Rajdhani express — the Delhi-Howrah Rajdhani — will complete 40 years of service on March one and the Railways have geared up to celebrate the occasion with a huge cake and a special menu for passengers.

The first Rajdhani was flagged off from New Delhi station in 1969 as a bi-weekly train to provide faster connectivity between metros. Operating at a speed of 120 kmph, it stopped only at Kanpur, Mughalsarai and Gomoh for operational reasons.

In the course of time, its success led to introduction of Mumbai Rajdhani and several more. Today, as many as 16 Rajdhanis connect Delhi to the state capitals.

The main function will be held at Howrah station, with Railways planning to recreate a festive-like atmosphere at the station complex on March 3, the day when it was flagged off from there.

“The entire train rake will be wrapped with fancy stickers and passengers will be presented with mementos and brochures,” said an Eastern Railway official, adding, “the brochures will contain the train’s history.”

Northern Railway is still to draw up a plan to commemorate the day.

Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation, which serves food only in Rajdhanis, is planning to prepare a special menu to commemorate the day. A huge cake will also be cut before the train departs.

In the course of its history, the Delhi-Howrah Rajdhani has been witness to several ups and downs. While it was involved in a major accident in September 2002 near Gaya, it was also the first Rajdhani to be accorded ISO 22000 certificate for the overall train management.

It was among the first to get state-of-art LHB coaches for enhanced passenger comfort and a new advertising source for multinationals.

As it enters its fortieth year, Railways are now planning to provide Internet facilities in all Rajdhanis and satellite phone connections in a few of them.

Published in: on February 19, 2009 at 4:56 pm  Leave a Comment  
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