All mountain railways in India will now have vistadome coaches, allowing passengers to enjoy the scenic beauty of hilly terrains, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said Friday.
The latest addition of vistadome or glass-enclosed coaches have been made to the Nilgiri Mountain Railway.
“Given the positive feedback on this initiative of Indian Railways, order for hundred vistadome coaches have been given to the concerned production unit,” said Mr Goyal, while speaking to reporters.
Vistadome coaches have been designed to provide panoramic view to passengers, while enhancing their travelling comfort. These coaches have been provided with large windows on the sides and glass panels on the roof to provide better viewing experience.
Three broad-gauge coaches have been manufactured by the Modern Coach Factory in Raebareli and are running between Dadar and Madgoan in Araku Valley and in Kashmir Valley.
Four mountain railways have been provided with vistadome coaches.
In total 11 vistdome coaches are presently in service — four in Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, two in Kalka-Shimla Railway, one in Kangra Valley Railway and one in Matheran Hill Railway.
Two meter-gauge coaches have been modified to vistadome by Golden Rock Workshop, Tiruchirappalli for Niligiri Mountain Railway.
The minister said that plans are afoot to manufacture or retrofit 18 more coaches to vistadome ones in the next three months for Kalka-Shimla, Kangra Valley, Patalpani-Kalkund section (in Madhya Pradesh) and Mailani-Nanpara section (in UP).
Another 69 more such coaches will be planned in 2019-20 to make it 100.
“This is another attempt by the Indian Railways to add to passenger experience while promoting tourism in the country,” he said.