Good news for tourists! Indian Railways resumes Kalka-Shimla Express as festival special train; details

By: |
October 22, 2020 3:59 PM

According to Railway Minister Piyush Goyal, train operations on the hilly Kalka-Shimla heritage section will enhance ease of movement as well as provide a big boost to the tourism and hospitality sector.

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Kalka-Shimla Festival Special Train: Big news for tourists! After a long gap of almost seven months, Indian Railways resumed services on the Kalka-Shimla heritage section yesterday (21 October 2020) with chugging off of train number 04515 Kalka-Shimla Festival Special. The returning service of train number 04516 Shimla-Kalka Festival Special will start today. According to Railway Minister Piyush Goyal, train operations on the hilly Kalka-Shimla heritage section will enhance ease of movement as well as provide a big boost to the tourism and hospitality sector. The minister also assured that all precautionary measures have been taken in order to ensure the safety of passengers.

Earlier, the iconic Kalka-Shimla train was equipped with a Europe-like see-through Vistadome coach (glass dome). This coach has a seating capacity of 36 with various other interesting features such as a glass roof, modified windows, air-conditioning system, designer LED lights, window blinds, as well as cushioned wooden interiors. This Vistadome coach is a first-of-its-kind in Indian Railways’ Kalka-Shimla heritage section. The Kalka-Shimla narrow gauge rail heritage section of Indian Railways is a World Heritage Site of UNESCO. Earlier, Hop-On-Hop-Off services were also launched in all train services running on the Kalka-Shimla section. The Hop-On-Hop-Off service facilitates passengers to board or de-board any station on the hilly section on a single ticket.

Meanwhile, the national transporter is also running 196 pairs of festival special trains (392 trains) between 20 October 2020 and 30 November 2020 for destinations like Kolkata, Lucknow, Varanasi, Patna, among others. These festival special trains are being operated to cater to the growing demand during the festive period of Dussehra, Durga Puja, Diwali and Chhatt Puja. A few days ago, Indian Railways had said that ‘special charges’ will be levied on the train tickets of these train services, making them costlier by 10 per cent to 30 per cent as compared to the fares of mail or express train services, depending on the class of travel.

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