Vande Bharat takes steps to conserve water this summer; Here's how

Railway’s own brand of drinking water ‘Rail Neer’ would be supplied in 500 ml bottles to the passengers in Vande Bharat. Photo: Shutterstock/PradeepGaurs

Severe water shortage has been reported in many places due to the harsh summer. People complain that they do not have enough water to drink or for other household uses. Considering this situation, the Indian Railway has adopted many measures to conserve and save water. The one-litre water bottles supplied to the passengers travelling in Vande Bharat trains will not be given anymore; instead, 500 ml bottles will be supplied. The move is part of the railways’ initiative to avoid waste of water.

Railway’s brand of drinking water ‘Rail Neer’ would be supplied in 500 ml bottles to the passengers in Vande Bharat. Those who need more water could get an extra 500 ml bottle. The passengers need not pay for the additional 500 ml water bottle. Deepak Kumar, Chief Public Relations Officer of the Northern Railway said that such measures have been adopted to reduce the unnecessary wastage of drinking water. Most passengers who have booked tickets in Vande Bharat would be travelling for short distances. So, 500 ml water bottles are more convenient for them. The railways have decided to give 500 ml bottles after considering many factors.

Meanwhile, the latest decision would apply to the Satabdi trains too. 500 ml water bottles would be supplied to the passengers travelling in Satabdi. The Central Railway uses recycled water to clean the coaches and the railway platforms to encourage water conservation. Around one crore litres of water is recycled through the thirty – two recycling plants. Besides, rainwater harvesting units have been installed at 158 centres. Three automatic coach washing plants too are installed to boost the railways’ water conservation efforts. Moreover, the Central Railway has launched many afforestation projects which aim to plant at least five lakh trees in various places. It was in 2019 that Prime Minister Narendra Modi flagged off the Vande Bharat trains in the country. Years later, Vande Bharat has become a significant part of the mighty Indian rail network. High-speed wifi connectivity, huge glass windows that allow excellent views and spacious luggage racks are some of the amazing facilities that the passengers enjoy in Vande Bharat trains.

Interestingly, Vande Bharat has brought significant changes in the train travel experiences of Malayalis too. The first Vande Bharat train in Kerala was flagged off in April last year. The criticism that the high ticket fares would keep Keralites away from Vande Bharat seemed to disappear as soon as the train began its service. The tickets were sold out quickly and there were long waiting lists continuously for the first two weeks after the service began. Currently, two Vande Bharat trains are operating services in Kerala.

The Vande Bharat Express train from Thiruvananthapuram to Kasargod runs six days a week. The train (20634) that departs from Thiruvananthapuram at 5.15 am reaches Kasargod by 1.20 pm. Meanwhile, the Vande Bharat (20633) that leaves Kasargod station at 2.30 pm arrives in Thiruvananthapuram at 10.40 pm. The second Vande Bharat train departs from Mangaluru Central at 6.15 am and reaches Thiruvananthapuram at 3.05 pm. The same train leaves Thiruvananthapuram at 4.05 pm and reaches Mangaluru Central by 12.40 am. Interestingly, the timetable of the Vande Bharat trains was changed twice so that the schedule of other trains wouldn’t be affected. 

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