India’s first deluxe train, the Deccan Queen Express which connects two major cities of Maharashtra, Pune and Mumbai, on Wednesday completed 92 years of service.
“This train is the only one of its kind on Indian Railways to have a restaurant car, will now run with LHB coaches from June 22,” Central Railway’s general manager Anil Kumar Lahoti told media persons.
The introduction of the ‘Deccan Queen’ between the two premier cities of Maharashtra Pune and Mumbai on June 1, 1930, was a major landmark in the history of the Great Indian Peninsula Railway, the forerunner of the Central Railway.
This was the first deluxe train introduced on the railway to serve two important cities of the region and was aptly named after Pune, which is also known as the ”Queen of Deccan” (Dakkhan ki Rani).
Initially, the train was introduced with two rakes of seven coaches each one of which was painted in silver with scarlet mouldings and the other with royal blue with gold lines. The underframes of the coaches of the original rakes were built in England while the coach bodies were built in the Matunga Workshop of the GIP Railway
The Deccan Queen, initially, had only first class and second class accommodation. The first class was abolished on January 1, 1949, and the second class was redesigned as the first class, which continued up to June 1955 when the third class was introduced on this train for the first time. This was later re-designated as a second class from April 1974 onwards.
The coaches of the original rakes were replaced in 1966 by anti-telescopic steel bodied integral coaches built by Integral Coach Factory, Perambur. These coaches incorporated the improved design of bogies for better riding comfort and also improvements in the interior furnishings and fittings.
From its inception, apart from providing high standards of comfort to the passengers, the train had witnessed various improvements such as the introduction, for the first time in India, of coaches with roller bearings, the replacement of end on generation coaches with self-generating coaches with 110 volts system and introduction of first and second class chair cars providing increased accommodation to passengers. (ANI)