Tejas Express will be the first luxury train linking Chennai Egmore with the southern districts, by Southern Railway. As per plans, the train will start at 6:00 AM, reach Madurai by 1:00 PM and return to Chennai by around 9:00 PM.
Soon travel business-class on Indian Railways in South India! The Southern Zone of Indian Railways plans to run the new rolled out swanky Tejas Express train from the city of Chennai to Madurai at an average speed of 70 kmph, which will result in a travel time of seven hours for the journey. According to a TOI report, the Tejas Express will be the first luxury train linking Chennai Egmore with the southern districts. As per the plans, the train will start at 6:00 AM, reach Madurai by 1:00 PM and return to Chennai by around 9:00 PM. Tickets may cost around Rs 1,000 for a chair-car seat if the dynamic pricing is taken into account, and the executive class seat around Rs 2,000.
According to the report, this has initiated heated discussions among regular commuters of the railway zone. The consensus is that the speed is too low with respect to the fare of Tejas Express, which is around 20% more than that of the Shatabdi Express. The Tejas Express, which is Indian Railways’ luxury train for inter-city travel has amenities like on-board WiFi, CCTV cameras, modular toilets and better seats. Commuters are of the view that with higher fares the train should have a runtime of only six hours to attract passengers.
A Giri, Advisor to Thanjavur district Rail Users Association (TANDRUA) was quoted in the report saying that the entire rail line is doubled and electrified. Charging 15% higher for a 10% faster journey may not be too attractive. Presently, the fastest train on the Chennai-Madurai route is the Vaigai Express which takes 7 hours and 40 minutes to complete the journey. The Vaigai Express is a super fast intercity express train running daily between Madurai and Chennai via Tiruchirappalli and is operated by Southern Railway zone.
However, with the Tamil Nadu government increasing bus fares, the train could attract passengers from the upper middle class and above. Meanwhile, railway sources quoted in the report revealed that the train will have a stoppage at Trichy and Kodaikanal Road. The Kodai Road stopping has been planned in such a way that tourists and travellers from Chennai can reach Kodaikanal before the usual hotel check-in time of 12:00 PM. Similarly, for the return journey, the tourists checking out from hotels in Kodaikanal can board the train after lunch, around 3:00 PM. The travel time to Trichy is likely to be 4 hours and 30 minutes, which will be competitive compared to airlines, considering the fare as well as airport check-in time at both ends.
Watch video- Travel business class on Indian Railways’ new Tejas Express
The new ‘Make in India’ Tejas Express from ICF, Chennai has several improvements over the one that runs on the Mumbai-Goa route. In fact, the executive-class seats of the new Tejas Express would remind you of a luxury bus or the business-class of an airline! Commuters between Chennai Egmore and Madurai can definitely look forward to comfortable train travel, but at a higher price compared to other trains.