Tejas Express will be India's first private luxury train and run between New Delhi and Lucknow. This will be an experiment by the Indian Railways' 100-day agenda of letting the private sector control operations of the train.
The swanky new train was first announced in 2016 but its timetable was announced only recently. There are 53 trains between New Delhi and Lucknow but no Rajdhani and this could be the first.
The IRCTC wants to add another train to the route as part of the 100-day agenda. Letting two trains go under the control of private players is part of the plan.
After open bidding for operationalisation, the onboard services of the Tejas Express will be handed over to the private company. However, the custody of the train will be transferred to IRCTC.
"These two trains will be given on an experimental basis and we hope that within the next 100 days, we will be able to run at least one of them. The idea was to identify routes which have low congestion and connect important tourists spots. The second train too will be identified soon," a senior official was quoted as saying by PTI.
The IRCTC has been directed to come up with a route plan by July 10.
"The Delhi-Lucknow Shatabdi departs from New Delhi in the morning, so instead of adding one more train in the morning on that route, the Tejas Express will instead originate from Lucknow in the morning," the official added.
Financial Express reports that some of the attractive features of the train include comfortable seats with a lot of leg room, personalised reading lights as well as call buttons for attendants, toilets fit with sensor-based taps, anti-graffiti wrapping, CCTV cameras, smoke detector and suppression system and dust sealed gangways.