At present, four electric multiple units (EMUs), better known as local trains, shuttle 40 times between Pune and Lonavala every day, catering to about one lakh commuters.
Divisional Railway Manager D K Jain:“We have drawn up a plan to run local trains between Pune and Lonavla every 15 minutes during selected hours,” says Jain. “During peak hours, in the morning and evening, one train every 15 minutes can be run,” said Jain.
March 31, 2009:The Central Railway plan, however, hinges on completion of the automatic signalling system and conversion from DC (direct current) system to AC (alternative current).
“Compared to AC, DC system is less efficient, as there is extra energy consumption. DC system is maintenance-prone and can't take extra load. On the other hand, AC system is more efficient and scores over DC system on several counts,” says Jain.
Both projects are likely to be completed by March 31 next year.
Between Lonavala and Daund!:According to Jain, once the automatic signalling and DC-to-AC conversion work are over, they would look at the possibility of completion of electrification work so that local trains could be run directly between Lonavala and Daund. “This might take two years.”
12 coaches:Also on the cards are more compartments for local trains. “We want to increase the coaches in local trains from nine to 12. A proposal has been sent to the Central Railway general manager in this connection. Since Mumbai now has additional rakes, we are hopeful of getting extra coaches soon,” adds Jain.
"Why not one train every five minutes?"Harsha Shah, president of the Railway Pravasi Sangh says, “Why 15 minutes? Why not one train every five minutes?”
“If railways have the will, they can do it by rescheduling long distance trains and implementing commuter-specific programmes. If a local train is available every five minutes, I am sure our roads will witness less traffic jams and fewer accidents,” she said.
To read more, please, visit - Express India
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