Mumbai commuters to get air-conditioned locals from Dec 25

Representational Image

The first service of the air-conditioned local will be flagged off by Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal at 2.10 pm on Monday from Churchgate railway station.

The AC local will run on the fast line, with stops at only nine major stations - Churchgate, Mumbai Central, Dadar, Bandra, Andheri, Borivali, Bhayander, Vasai Road and Virar (from south to north).

The inaugural comes after the Western Railways conducted about 65 trial runs over two years at Kurla and Virar car-sheds before starting its services today.

More news: Christmas celebrated with enthusiasm, fervour in J&K

After years of debates, speculation and planning, the Railways will unveil the first airconditioned suburban trains for Mumbai commuters from Monday, December 25 - - 150 years after the first suburban local was hauled by a steam engine in 1867, officials said. While 1st and 12th coach from Churchgate end are earmarked as Ladies coache and 7 seats in 2nd and 11th coach from Churchgate end are earmarked for Senior citizens, 10 seats in 4th and 7th coach from Churchgate end are earmarked for Divyangs.

On May 5, 1992, the WR introduced the world's first Ladies Special trains which have now become a regular feature and a trendsetter for similar services in India and other countries. "The guard controls the door closures and openings in the AC local train". The AC local fare will be 1.2 times more than the First Class base fare for the first six months - plus 5% GST and a surcharge under Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP), rounded off to the nearest multiple of five; and, and 1.3 times more the base fare thereafter. The only slow AC service will be from Mahalaxmi to Borivli after which it will run from Borivli to Churchgate. RPF and railway staff will be present inside the rakes to ensure people alight and board properly. There is provision for weekly, fortnightly and monthly seasonal ticket, and AC ticket holders can travel in the First Class compartment too. SPECIAL TICKET/PASS The most common cause for confusion among commuters was whether the regular train pass could be used for the AC local.

The 12-coach AC train with self-closing doors is a landmark for the city's lifeline.

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