Kasargod, Sep 25, 2023: Prime Minister Narendra Modi flagged off the second Vande Bharat Express in Kerala at an online ceremony on Sunday. Seven other Vande Bharat trains were flagged off across the country at the event.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Modi said India boasted a fleet of 34 Vande Bharat trains, a testament to the progress made in the country’s railway infrastructure over the past nine years. “Efforts have been directed towards maintaining clean stations and trains, making travel more enjoyable for passengers,” he said.
In Kasaragod, the flag-off ceremony was attended by Minister of State for External Affairs V. Muraleedharan, Minister in charge of Railways V. Abdurrahiman, Member of Parliament Rajmohan Unnithan, and MLA N.A. Nellikunnu.
The inaugural run was accorded public receptions at major stations under the Thiruvananthapuram division of the Southern Railway. Revenue Minister K. Rajan led the function at Thrissur railway station, while Hibi Eden and Kochi Mayor M. Anilkumar led the ceremonies at Ernakulam Junction. Union Minister of State for External Affairs V. Muraleedharan and Vadakara MP and Congress leader K. Muraleedharan travelled aboard the train right from Kasaragod to Thiruvananthapuram.
An interesting video was shared by the Southern Railways on X, formerly Twitter, of the two Vande Bharat trains ‘meeting’ each other between Kasaragod and Kanhangad stations. Thiruvananthapuram-Kasaragod (20634) and Kasaragod-Thiruvananthapuram (20631) passed each other soon after the second Vande Bharat left the Kasaragod station during the inaugural run.
Number of seats
Once regularised, the second Vande Bharat train will set off from Kasaragod at 7.05 a.m. and reach Thiruvananthapuram at 3 p.m. There will be an additional stop at Tirur. It offers a range of seating options, including a seven-seater chair car and an executive chair car. In total, there are 546 seats in the chair car and 52 seats in the executive class.
Currently, the train has 352 general reservation seats and 33 executive class seats, with the remainder allocated to categories such as emergency quota and Tatkal (96 seats and 11 seats, respectively). There is no provision for premium Tatkal booking.
Ticket prices for the Thiruvananthapuram-Kasaragod (Train No. 20632) and Kasaragod-Thiruvananthapuram (20631) services vary slightly. The distinction also applies to the first Vande Bharat train. Fares for trains originating from Kasaragod are slightly higher, with the Kasaragod-Thiruvananthapuram journey priced at ₹1,555 for chair car and ₹2,835 for executive class. The Thiruvananthapuram-Kasaragod journey is priced at ₹1,515 for chair car and ₹2,800 for executive class.
The service of the second Vande Bharat will be launched from Thiruvananthapuram at 4.05 p.m. on Tuesday. It will reach Kasaragod by 11.58 p.m. It will operate from Thiruvananthapuram on all days except Mondays and from Kasaragod on all days except Tuesdays.
Courtesy: The Hindu