New Delhi: Even as the Indian Railways suspended passenger, mail and express trains to combat the spread of coronavirus, the national transporter has introduced the innovative idea of super heavy fast special freight trains to transport more essential items across the country.
A railway ministry spokesperson in a statement said, "To ensure delivery of bigger volumes at a faster speed, Indian Railways have innovated by joining two freight trains together."
He said the success stories and innovations have come from Northern Railway and South Central Railway.
He said that two freight trains loaded from two different originating stations are clubbed at the nearest junction point and moved as single train up to the common junction point of the destination stations taking the advantage of path availability due to non-running of passenger trains.
Under normal circumstances, one freight train containing 42 covered wagons loaded with food grains carries around 2,600 tonnes. But in the new concept two freight trains with 84 covered wagons with 5,200 tonnes capacity food grains moved in a single path.
"This concept drastically reduces the journey time of the freight trains to their respective destinations," he said.
The official said that Annapoorna trains from north and Jai Kisan Special from south mark the beginning of long distance super heavy fast special freight trains.
He said the Northern Railway has formed 5,000 tonne lead long haul loaded foodgrain trains and 25 such Annapoorna trains have been formed and run by NR upto April 16. "They covered the states like Assam, Bihar, Goa, Gujarat, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Manipur, Nagaland, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Mizoram. These long lead long haul foodgrain trains have gone up to New Bongaigaon (NBQ) in North Frontier Railway (NFR)," he said.
He further said that as part of this endeavour, now the South Central Railway too has come up with a unique concept of running "Jai Kisan" special freight trains so as to ensure speedy delivery of food grains to different parts of the country.
He said the first Jai Kisan train was moved from Dornakal Junction in Telangana on South Central Railway to Southern Railway (Sevuru and Chettinad) by clubbing two food grains trains at Dornakal Junction.
Similarly, the second Jai Kisan special train was also clubbed at Dornakal Junction in Telangana and moved to Southern Railway (Dindigal and Mudiyapakkam).
The official said that these trains have registered an average speed of 44 kmph, fulfilling the objective of speedy movement of the essential commodities.
The official further said that the national transporter has loaded more than 3.2 million tonnes of food grains between April 1 to April 16 as compared to 1.29 million tonnes in the same corresponding period last year.
The national transporter is running only special parcel trains and freight trains to ensure the supply of essential items across the country.