Railways’ ambitious Train 18 has got clearance from the Electrical Inspector to the Government (EIG), after three days of inspection, sources in the ministry said Thursday, adding the train is likely to be flagged off by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a week. The much-awaited train had been in limbo for over a month after it finished its trials and was given conditional clearance by the chief commissioner of Railway Safety.
The train was sent for EIG inspection on Monday after the Railway Board gave its approval despite objections from its rolling stock department, which designed and manufactured the state-of-the-art train.
The Rolling Stock department had argued that there was no legal or administrative precedent to send the train for EIG inspection, as it already had received certification from Research Design and Standards Organisation.
The source said the report of the inspection will be sent to the board after which a decision will be taken on when to officially launch the train. The 16-coach train, built in 18 months at a cost of Rs 97 crore, is regarded as a successor to the 30-year-old Shatabdi Express. It’s also the first locomotive-less train in the country.