When Train 18 Tricked To Be Modi’s Bullet Train
The Narendra Modi government might cash in on a refurbished electrical multiple unit (EMU) called Train 18.
For people who travel in trains – red, blue and green are the colours synonymous with trains in India. So, when a white-coloured train without an engine made its inaugural run between New Delhi and Varanasi in February, with high speed and new exteriors and interiors, it took many by surprise.
This train – Train 18 or Vande Bharat Express – was like a spectacle at the railway station of New Delhi, Allahabad and Varanasi where everyone was trying to peep inside the tinted glass to get a glimpse of the new age trains which India would be running.
Train 18 or Vande Bharat Express is a semi-high speed train with inbuilt engine manufactured by Indian Railways' Chennai-based Integral Coach Factory (ICF) at the cost of Rs 100 crore. The train comprises new interiors, vacuum toilets and is likely to replace Shatabdis.
Amid the crowd in Varanasi was an old tall man in 70’s dressed in dhoti-kurta shouting “Modi ki bullet train” amid cheers and chaos. His enthusiasm forced me to speak to him and the groups. His name was Pratap Singh and he was a resident of a village in Varanasi who was going to Allahabad for Kumbh with his fellow villagers.
I tried to clarify to the group that it wasn’t bullet train but a normal train which has been renovated with new amenities for better passenger experience, but I was snubbed. For the crowd Modi had delivered what he promised – the bullet train. To add on, it was a Made in India bullet train.
A similar reaction was from some teenagers at Allahabad station too. A group of school students who were eagerly waiting for the Train 18 at platform 1 for over two hours to take a selfie with this new age train. Ritika Sharma, a student of the government school Allahabad, summed up the train as “Our-age train”. “Everybody is bored with the same red and blue trains. This white looks so nice. To add on it has comfortable seats, content on demand and revolving chairs,” said Ritika who hasn’t boarded the Train 18 and her assumptions are based from what she gathered from television and friends.
From the people’s perception it seemed that the Modi government managed to play its cards right. Just a month before the elections a white train had an impact which it was expected to make. For urbanites it was a new-age train and a respite from boring interiors while for rural it was Modi’s bullet train.
- Ranbaxy And The Culture Of Jugaad: What Brought A Leading Company Down
- Portrait Of A Cyanide Killer: How Kerala's Jolly Killed Six Family Members Meal By Meal
- Ranbaxy Former Promoter Shivinder Singh Arrested In Fraud Case
- Erdogan Threatens To Flood EU With Refugees If It Criticises Syria Operation
- India v SA, Pune Test: Agarwal, Kohli Help Hosts Dominate On Day 1
- Everything Is ‘Normal’ In The Wonderland That Is Kashmir
- Blaming BJP For Rot Within Won’t Help Congress
- Jadavpur Fracas Godsend For BJP, It Is Set To Crack Open Left's Citadel
- Aurat ka Dal, and 99 Other Reasons Why Not to Impose Hindi
- From Cambodian Polls To Broken Heart Syndrome, Valley Newspapers Carry Everything But Kashmir
- The World Is Watching India. It Won't Let Us Get Away On Kashmir, NRC For Too Long
- Spurious Drugs Flooding Indian Market, Says Author Katherine Eban
- RBI, Govt To Discuss Shortcomings In Co-Op Bank Laws: Sitharaman
- After Syria, Will Trump’s 'Unmatched Wisdom' Show Up In Afghanistan Next?
- Will Modi Raise Return Of Aksai Chin With Xi? Asks Congress' Manish Tewari
- Olga Tokarczuk Wins 2018 Literature Nobel, Peter Handke Wins 2019 Award
- 'Critical Reflection Of State Of Affairs': Governor On RSS Worker's Murder
- IND Vs SA, 2nd Test: Mayank Agarwal Emulates Legendary Virender Sehwag
- Loose Lips Sink Ships: Self-Aggrandising Pandya Makes A Fool Of Himself