General passengers will have to shell out about 15 per cent more than the existing fare for travelling in Antodaya Express, the fully unreserved superfast service to be launched shortly in dense routes.
Equipped with facilities like water purifiers, mobile phone charging points and fire extinguishers among others, the first Antodaya Express is slated to be pressed into service from Mumbai for Tatanagar this month. Provided with bio-toilets for zero discharge of effluents, Antodaya coaches will have toilet occupation indication lights provided at each end near the doorway with better visibility from compartments, a first in general class.
Two rakes of Antodaya Express are ready now to be rolled out on the high demand long-route destinations, a senior Railway Ministry official said. While one will be launched between Mumbai and Tata, the second is slated to be between Ernakulam and Howrah, another busy route. However, the official said the fare for Antodaya Express is likely to be slightly higher than the mail/express fares.
The fare structure has not been finalised yet but it will be between 10 per cent to 15 per cent more from the regular fare, he said. Catering to the growing requirement of general passengers, Railways had announced the introduction of Antodaya superfast trains with many modern facilities for unreserved category in the last budget.
Cushioned luggage racks with coat hooks, Antyodaya Express will also have LED lights and enhanced capacity dustbins. Besides there will be cushioned seats with aluminium composite panels interior for aesthetic look of the coach. Railways has maintained that manufacturing cost of these coaches with modern facilities is high, so there have to be special fares for these services which will be higher than that of regular trains.
Earlier Railways introduced the Humsafar Express, the fully AC-3 service, also part of the budget commitment, with dynamic fares. After Antodaya, railways will launch Tejas Express, another special service in April with higher fares.