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Mumbai may lose cool before AC

shriram | 14th January 2015 | Latest News
Mumbai may lose cool before AC

    The good news that Mumbai's suburban system will get 12 air-conditioned local trains might be a premature one. Firstly because authorities at Integral Coach Factory in Chennai, which builds these locals, have stated that the railway board order is for 10 rakes over and above the 72 rakes - better known as Bombardier locals to Mumbaikars - that will be built as part of the Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP).

Secondly, there is no clear emphasis by the railway board that these trains would be air-conditioned ones. Speaking to dna, A K Agarwal, general manager of ICF, confirmed as much. "We do not know whether these nine rakes (over and above the one AC local being constructed at the ICF) will be air-conditioned. That will be known only after the trials of the first AC rake are over and the feedback is assessed," said Agarwal.

That is where the news gets uncomfortable for Mumbaikars. The trials of the city's first air-conditioned local, expected to be in the city by the end of July, might take a few months going by the time the railway authorities in the city have spent testing the two Bombardier rakes. Both Western and Central Railway have taken the better part of 2013 and 2015 to test the Bombardier rake and even now are awaiting permission from the Commissioner of Railway Safety to commission the first of the two rakes being tested.

"The air-conditioned rake will be a totally new product unlike the Bombardier ones. The AC local will have new type of sandwich flooring, imported vestibules etc.


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