Train passengers will soon have option of travelling in a new class of ‘Economy AC coaches’ with fares less than normal 3AC tariff. The proposed fully AC train will have three-tier Economy AC coaches besides AC-3, AC-2 and AC-1 classes as part of the transformation exercise. An added feature would be automatic doors. However, the passengers will not require blankets in the Economy AC class like other AC coaches as the temperature will be around 24-25 degrees.
Currently Mail and Express trains have Sleeper, Third AC, Second AC and First AC classes while Rajdhani, Shatabdi and recently introduced Humsafar and Tejas trains are fully air- conditioned. The railways is exploring an idea to introduce fully AC trains in select routes, aiming to provide comfort by facilitating AC travel for maximum passengers.
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An exercise has been undertaken for a transformation in service by upgrading existing facilities in trains and stations and a separate cell has been created by the Railways for this. “There will not be any chilling effect like in other AC classes and the temperature will be fixed around 24-25 degrees. The aim is to make the passengers comfortable and not make them feel the outside heat,” said a senior Railway Ministry official.
The recently launched Humsafar Express, comprising 3-AC coaches only, has become very popular. The fully AC train with more Economy AC coaches is expected to cater to more passengers. However, the details of the Economy AC class are to be worked out before deciding for manufacturing such coaches, said the official.