Railways to hit tracks with first Vande Bharat type freight trains

Indian Railways is planning to introduce super-fast parcel services keeping in mind the objective of capturing additional high-value and time-sensitive cargoes.

Photo courtesy: Twitter/
Indian PM Narendra Modi flagging off a Vande Bharat train in Himachal Pradesh. Photo courtesy: Twitter/@narendramodi

The special types are cargo are presently being transported through other modes of transport.

"These services are being planned via new 'Freight EMU rolling-stock built on Vande-Bharat platform, the first rake of which is likely to be introduced in service very soon," the Ministry of Railways said in a statement on Thursday.

Based on the interactions with some of the potential customers, the first service is going to be introduced between the Delhi-NCR region and the Mumbai region.

"Necessary infrastructure and facilities at the identified terminals may be created in a time-bound manner, within the next three weeks," it added.

Here are some of the salient features of the Freight EMU rakes:

  • Operational speed potential: 160 kmph
  • Designed for palletised container transportation
  • Distributed power, with 50 per cent powering
  • 1,800 mm wide automatic sliding plug doors
  • Pneumatically retractable roller floor system with locking arrangements for easy handling of pallets Provision for loading of reefer containers for temperature-sensitive cargo
  • Payload: 264 tonne (in 16 car formations)

For the successful launch of such trains, Zonal Railways are requested to identify and interact with the potential customers at the Zonal/Divisional level and to identify the terminals for running the initial services, ensure that necessary infrastructure and facilities, required to run Freight EMU services, are available at the identified terminals, besides deciding the time-table for services in consultation with the respective Zonal Railways.

Other potential routes for the running of subsequent services of Freight EMUS may also be identified in consultation with potential customers and other stakeholders and may be communicated to this office. The rating structure of Freight EMU services is being worked out, and will be communicated in due course.