The Indian Railways will flag off India’s first Kisan Special Parcel Train from Maharashtra’s Devlali to Bihar’s Danapur on Friday afternoon to transport perishable goods, a promise made in the Union Budget 2020-21.
Railway Ministry officials said that the train will depart from Devlali on Friday at 11 a.m. and reach Danapur at 6.45 p.m. next day covering a distance of 1,519 km in approx 32 hours.
On the reverse trip, the train will depart from Danapur on Sunday and reach Devlali on Monday.
The official said that the Bhusawal Division in the Central Railway is primarily an agro-based division as Nasik and surrounding region produce a huge quantity of fresh vegetables, fruits, flowers, onions and other agro products which are perishable.
The official said that these perishable items are mainly transported to areas around Patna, Allahabad, Katni, Satna etc.
The official said that the train will have its stoppages at Nasik Road, Manmad, Jalgaon, Bhusaval, Burhanpur, Khandwa, Itarsi, Jabalpur, Satna, Katni, Manikpur, Prayagraj Chheoki, Pt Deendayal Upadhyay Nagar and Buxar.
The official further said that aggressive marketing is being done with local farmers, loaders, APMC and individuals to use the Kisan Rail to transport perishable goods.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman proposed to start ‘Kisan Rail’ through the public-private-partnership (PPP) mode for a cold supply chain to transport perishable goods in her budget speech.
The Kisan Rail will comprise refrigerated coaches in Express and Freight trains. The Railways has developed a new design of refrigerated parcel vans with the carrying capacity of 17 tonnes for the transportation of highly perishable parcel traffic. It was procured through Rail Coach Factory Kapurthala. The Indian Railways currently has a fleet of nine such refrigerated vans and they can be booked on a round-trip basis.