Pandian Express may not get LHB coaches for now
After promising the Chennai-Madurai Pandian Express would get new Linke Hoffman Busche (LHB) coaches, Southern Railway is doing a re-think. A section of officers wants the LHB rake for Chennai-New Delhi Grand Trunk (GT) or Tamil Nadu Express.
A month ago, zonal and Madurai division officials widely publicised the news that Pandian Express would be the first intra-TN train to get the coaches that have superior safety features, better shock-absorption and are lighter. While Chennai-Mangalore Express got the first LHB rake in Southern Railway around six months ago, Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains have the coaches. Railway Board had cleared LHB rakes for Pandian and Chennai-Tirunelveli Nellai Express.
It has now emerged that a section of officers wants the LHB rakes used for the two trains to New Delhi, reasoning that trains linking the national capital on which many VIPs travel should have such coaches. The higher revenue earned by GT and Tamil Nadu Express compared to Pandian was another rea son. A source in Madurai division confirmed that the Pandian Express proposal had been put on the backburner.
Another section of officers wants the Railway Board directive to be followed to bring cheer to TN passengers.“There are so many in the state who have an emotional connect with Pandian Express.We received favourable feedback when it was announced.They will be disappointed,“ said a senior official, requesting anonymity .
Insiders say a third section of officers wants to know why both trains shouldn’t get LHB coaches like other zones and that choosing one train over the other is due to Railway Board not allotting enough LHB rakes for SR. “This might be because TN is not politically important for the parties at the Centre,“ he said.
dinathanthi newspaper 13/07/2016 : http://www.dinathanthiepaper.in/firstpage.aspx