Vegetable market on trains

If the South Western Railway (SWR) has its way, then the trains which will pass through Belgaum will have incorporated ‘vegetable markets’.

The plan has twin objectives preempting high decibel selling by hawkers who cause nuisance to passengers and at the same making vegetables available to passengers.

SWR General Manager Kuldeep Chaturvedi told Express that the Railways has a plan to establish a special ‘vegetable vendor compartment’ soon in trains moving through Belgaum.

The plan of the SWR stems out from several complaints that passengers face a lot of problems as vendors carry vegetables in train for selling.

Although passengers find the vendors a nuisance, it is a known fact that vegetables are sold briskly in moving trains as it helps passengers save time and avoid their transportation from market to railway station.

Chaturvedi also said that the Railways has no plans for a new railway route from Kolhapur to Dharwad via Nippani, Belgaum and Kittur (parallel to National Highway 4).

As the Railway is engaged in several other works, the proposal is not considered, he pointed out.

Go trainspotting at Bangalore railway station

The Bangalore Division of the South Western Railway (SWR) has put a replica of the 4,500 horse power diesel loco — Wide Diesel Passenger (WDP4) Locomotive — on display at the City Railway Station.

Manufactured by the Diesel Locomotive Work, Varanasi, 44 such locos are being maintained by the Diesel Locomotive Shed, Krishnarajapuram, in Bangalore. Since the loco is a matter of prestige for the Indian Railways, the Bangalore Division thought it fit to keep its replica on display, said Divisional Railway Manager Sudhanshu Mani.

Mr. Mani said WDP4 is the most powerful diesel engine available in India, which can haul up to 24 coaches at a time. Train rakes with a minimum of 21 coaches are fitted with this loco and many trains leaving Bangalore are hauled by this engine, he noted. “Also, WDP4 is the most technologically advanced loco and hence we thought of displaying its replica at the City Station,” he added. A railway engineer familiar with WDP4 said that this loco can clock up to 160 km per hour and is fitted with state-of-the-art microprocessor-based controls. These technological advancements make the loco one of the safest engines to be deployed to haul passenger coaches, the engineer noted.

While a conventional loco consumes about 164 gm diesel to produce 1 bhp, WDP4 consumes 155 gm of diesel to produce the same power, he said. Across the country, there are about 400 WDP4 locos, the engineer added.

The replica is kept for display near the parking lot at the Okalipuram entrance of the City Railway Station.