Pradeep Pattanayak

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will flag off the Vande Bharat Express in Odisha on May 18. 

This information was shared by the national in-charge of social media for BJP Mahila Morcha, Sujata Sabat Padhy. Taking to Twitter, Padhy informed that the express train service will be inaugurated in Odisha by PM Narendra Modi. According to sources, PM Modi will flag off the express via video conferencing. 

Padhy also informed that Union Ministers Ashwini Vaishnaw and Dharmendra Pradhan held discussions about the importance of the Vande Bharat Express. 

The first trial run of the Howrah-Puri Vande Bharat Express was conducted on April 28. The train departed from Howrah at 6:10 am and reached Puri at noon with two-minute stoppages at Kharagpur, Bhadrak, Jajpur, Cuttack and Bhubaneswar. The train departed from Puri at 1:50 pm and reached Howrah at 8:30 pm.

The Vande Bharat train, which can run with a maximum speed of 180 km/h (110 mph),  features a GPS-based passenger information system, bio-vacuum toilets, and rotational seats that can be aligned in the direction of travel in the executive class, and employs a regenerative braking system. 

It is believed that the launch of Vande Bharat train will help boost the tourism sector in Odisha. 

It is worth mentioning, the Odisha government has demanded the train on two more routes-Puri-Rourkela via Sambalpur and Bhubaneswar-Hyderabad. In this regard, Odisha Commerce and Transport Minister, Tukuni Sahoo has written a letter to Union Railways Minister, Ashwini Vaishnaw.