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Page#    499 Blog Entries  next>>
  
My travelogue of the Vadodara Trip.
FIRST PLAN:
Ranchi - Anand Vihar - 12825 Jharkhand Sampark Kranti Expess, 28/6/SL
Nizamuddin - Vadodara - 12918 Gujarat Sampar Kranti Express, 30/6/SL
Vadodara - Ahmedabad - 19017 Saurashtra Janta Express, 2/7/SL
Ahmedabad - Mumbai - 12932 Double Decker, 3/7/CC
Mumbai - Dhanbad - 12322 Kolkata Mail, 3/7/3AC
Dhanbad - Ranchi - Bus
SECOND PLAN
Same till Ahmedabad as per first plan.
Ahmedabad - Mumbai - 12902 Gujarat Mail, 2/7/2AC
Mumbai - Pune - 11027 Chennai Mail, 3/7/SL
Pune - Secundrabad - 12025 Shatabdi,4/7/CC
Secundrabad - Vijaywada - 12776 Cocanada AC , 4/7/3AC
Vijaywada - Visakhapatnam - 22708 Double Decker, 5/7/CC
Visakhapatnam - Hatia - 22838 Dharti Aaba AC, 6/7/3AC
FINAL PLAN
Ranchi - Anand Vihar - 12825 JSK
New Delhi - Vadodara - 09006 NDLS MMCT AC SF SPL, 30/6/2AC
Vadodara - Ahmedabad - 22959 Surat Jamnagar Intercity Express, 1/7/FC
Ahmedabad - Mumbai - 12932 Double Decker, 3/7/CC (Train short terminated at Vasai Road)
Vasai Road - Ahmedabad - 12931 Double Decker, 3/7/CC
Ahmedabad - Delhi - 12915 Ashram Express, 4/7/2AC
Anand Vihar - Hatia - 12874 Jharkhand Express, 6/7/2AC
Why the plans were changed, you will come to know as the travelogue goes on.

1 Public Posts - Thu Jul 05, 2018

5 Public Posts - Mon Jul 09, 2018

4 Public Posts - Tue Jul 10, 2018

2 Public Posts - Fri Jul 13, 2018

1 Public Posts - Mon Jul 16, 2018

4 Public Posts - Wed Jul 18, 2018

  
3/7/2018:
Finally after returning from friend's meetup at around 12 midnight after enjoying a sumptuous food at Manek Chowk, I had got 4 hrs to sleep. I slept till 4 am and was awaken by the alarm tune. I packedmy luggage , had a bath and at 4:45 am checked out of the hotel. It took around 5 minutes to reach ADI. The train was scheduled to depart from PF7. With the help of escelator got on to the FOB and arrived at PF 7. Mumbai bound Karnavati express was shunted there with passengers sitting in it for reaching Mumbai. At 5 am Karnavati moved out. The only shop opened in the morning had freshly prepared dhoklas and poha. I took 2 pieces of dhokla for 10. There were too many bottles of Amul kool also. My brother likes it a lot. But I had never tried. Since I was in the state of Amul, I thought to try my hand on it. I took one bottle and after having the dhoklas i took a sip of the milk. It felt nice. I gulped that down and took another bottle. At 5:30 am our train was shunted. I had a berth in Lower deck as indicated on the ticket but it was actually on the middle deck at the gate. The occupancy of the train was around 40% when it departed from Ahmedabad at dot on time. Cruising through outskirts of Ahmedabad we moved swiftly towards our next halts. We reached Vadodara on time and I opened newspaper website as per my habit. The first news that gathered my attention was mumbai rains. It had rained fully last night though train services were unaffected. I felt a sigh of relief. The train departed Vadodara and I was engrossed in the journey until some passenger was talking about collapse of bridge in Mumbai. Quickly took out the phone and read the news of part of Gokhale bridge collapse in Andheri and all lines blocked. Still I was optimistic that we may reach Mumbai delayed by few hours. It had started raining by the time we reached Bharuch and water started seeping inside the coach from somewhere near the gate. Whole middle deck floor was wet in few moments. I was keeping a sight on mumbai rains and frequently checked twitter handles of WR and CR. I had also started to search for alternatives. Some IRIans suggested to get down at Surat but getting down in unknown territory equally affected by rains was not a wise decision. I decided to continue on. My first alternative was Palace Queen Humsafar but its timings clashed at Surat as it was just behind us. I didn't know what to do? What if I book and humsafar is allowed ahead? Though we reached Surat first but in no time, Humsafar also came behind and stood on adjacent PF. Still I was in dillema, should I leave the train? But paying the hefty fine was not possible to ultimately dropped the plan. Humsafar departed and we were stopped for a long halt of around 45 mins. By the time we departed Surat, Rains had worsened and we could see the aftermath. The areas beside tracks were submerged in water. I was keeping a check on twitter and also checked alternatives via Delhi. Option was Ashram express on 4/7 and JSJ Express on 6/7 from delhi to ranchi. Both in 2ac and both were RAC. At Vapi, finally the notification came that we were to be short terminated at Vasai Rod. The first thing I did was booked a return ticket to Mumbai in same DD in current from Borivali. My Paytm account was exhausted. I phone my father and informed him the situation and my further plans. He transferred 5000 in my paytm account for further bookings. I booked the RAC tickets of Ashram Express and JSJ express from Ahmedabad to Ranchi via Delhi. In Vapi the passengers of Bikaner Bandra express were transferred to our train and our train was fully pack now. As we moved from Vapi situation was worsening and there was water everywhere. At Virar the short terminated Karnavati was standing with few passengers inside it. We crossed the Vaitarna river which was flowing furiously with small whirlpools being formed in the river. Finally we reached Vasai road and stopped. Some people were not ready to get down despite announcements being done. They had to be convinced by the fellow passengers whom they asked many times before deboarding. I also had to deboard as I was in C9 and my allotted seat for return journey was in C3. I deboarded and admidst the drizzle went towards C3. In C3 also middle deck floor was totally wet. I had seat in Lower Deck. I setlled down on my seat. The luggage space was better in middle deck as my trolley bag was not going inside while in middle deck it was easily put in with ample amount of space left above the bag too. Any how with little bit of emptying the bag and forcefully pushing it, it went in. At 15:15 hrs the train started return journey with very few passengers. Still around 200 people were present. Some had come come all the way from Mumbai central. I was very hungry now as I hadn't eaten anything after the morning breakfast of dhokla at 6 am. After crossing the Vaitarna river again, the catering guy appeared. He had eatables like aaloo paratha, idlis, poha, maggi, cutlet. I took parathas as I needed proper food to satisfy my hunger. The aaloo parathas costed 40 rs with 2 parathas and a ketchup sachet. The taste was OK. We reached Surat late in the evening with passing the short terminated trains at Vapi, Valsad and a long halt at Outer after Udhna. Surat was filled with passengers beyond its capacity, we came to know that they were waiting for 3 trains. At Surat again the catering guy made its presence with Girnar tea. Seeing all the copassengers taking it, I too took it for Rs 15 a cup. He simply tore the packet, put it in the paper cup with hot water and stirred. It was nice with all the flavours blasting in the mouth simultaneously. I really liked it. By the time we crossed Surat darkness had engulfed this part of the earth. I also started watching the movie Parmanu in my mobile. The train was running furiously after Surat, hitting constant 120. After stopping at Bharuch we reached Vadodara delayed by an hour and some minutes. After a short halt of just around two minutes we were given the starter and we rolled out. Majority of passengers got down here. And some boarded. We were total 15 passengers in the coach. After Vadodara also train ran at MPS trying to manage delay. We did manage some minutes till Anand. At Anand some deboarded and only 3 were left in C3. Two on lower deck and 1 on middle deck. The train crossed maninagar without stopping and pulled into Ahmedabad PF 8 with 35 mins delay. I was again at the same station where I was in the morning. Hotel was not a tension, as while departing Vadodara I had already called Hotel Kinara inn, Relief road, where I stayed last 2 nights, to book a room for me for 24 hrs. They were kind enough to accept it without any booking amount or any agent involved. So grateful to them. Thanks Hotel Kinara inn. After deborading my body pained a bit. I was sitting in double decker since moring 5:30 i.e. 17 hrs. I streched a bit before deboarding and that eased the pain little bit. All I needed was food now but I decided to go to hotel first. Went to the hotel and they had already readied the room. Just made the entry, gave the food order and switched on the TV to enjoy my favourite show "Taarak mehta Ka ooltah chashmah", the stress buster. This is how the hectic day ended.

  
294 views
Thanks: 1
Jul 19 (10:20)
179458/ndnivra   48 blog posts
eagerly waiting for the next part!

  
Will update by today evening. 2 parts are left ahmedabad - delhi, delhi - ranchi.

  
Ahmedabad to Delhi:
I had reached back at Ahmedabad late night on 3/7 from Mumbai (actually Vasai road) after a tiring 17 hours journey on Double decker. Had a late night dinner and checked my PNR status of Ashram express. It was still RAC 8, but HO quota had many seats so without any doubt it was going to CNF. I got the message at 1430 hrs on 4/7 about CNFation and it said HA1, 4. It was a UB. That was enough to down my spirits and I slept for 2 hours more. Had it been SL/LB, I would have been searching on IRI ( also some other sites) for what to observe, eat, etc etc. After sleeping for around 90 mins, I got up at 4 pm. Had a bath, packed my bag and checked out of the hotel at 1745 hrs. It took 5 mins to reach ADI. Took the escalator connected to FOB and went to PF 7 where Ashram express was placed. My coach was at far end of the train and I was at the other end. I walked along the PF only to stop in between for buying a pair of samosas and a sandwich plus a bottle of Amul Kool for dinner. I boarded the train in HA1 which was super clean and a fresh aroma of air freshner welcomed the passengers. Almost all the seats were occupied. The lower berths below me had an elderly couple sitting on them. I kept my small bag on the UB and the trolley bag below seat no. 3. After locking my bag below the berth I went out to click some pics but the heavy presence of RPFs for manning the general coach passengers ensured that I don’t take out my mobile for snapping. I saw a tin plate in GS coach toilet put as jugaad. Okha Puri was waiting for its Loco to be attached on adjacent PF and a WDP 4 was doing rounds, probably being ready for its next duty. After some moments the RPF people went inside the GS coach and I got an opportunity. Mauka – Mauka, Mauka – Mauka. Quickly took out the phone and clicked the GS jugaad pic, a train TB of Ashram, a WAP 4 ready to haul Okha Puri and a WDP 4. That was enough memories and I put the mobile in my pocket just in time. The RPF personnels deboarded and were coming towards me, I thought they saw me. I imagined my pics being deleted. As my thought process continued, they walked past me and I was relieved. Now it was time to go inside. At sharp 1830 train departed. I wanted a side berth (anyone be it upper or lower) because I like the privacy it provides. But all the side berths had both the passengers on same PNR. Anyways I saw a SLB empty and for the time being I sat on that to witness the scenes outside as it was still daylight. The train slowly chugged out and we soon reached Sabarmati river bridge. Some repair works was going on the bridge with people busy with their work. I took some snaps. In the mean time TTE checked our ids ( no tickets only berth no. and id). As the darkness spread, I went on to my berth and had the samosas and sandwich which were nice. The cooling was more, so the elderly couple requested the attendant to increase the temperature which he obliged to smiling. The attendant was nice and softspoken. He took orders of food which was promised to deliver at Abu road. Some people ordered, some didn’t. I put on the reading light and started to read the book by IPS officer K Vijay Kumar – Veerappan. At 9:30 I decided to call it a day and after switching off the light slept. After waking up in the morning the first thing I noticed was derailment of Pooja express on IRI. The train was heavily delayed too and we were standing somewhere. I thought about my luck which was turning worse. In which ever direction I was going, something or the other interruption came on. Towards mumbai, bridge collapsed in andheri and here towards delhi, train derailed in Phulera. I thought will this train be too short terminated? Just as I was thinking, I got a call from my father, asking about my journey and told him about whole thing. He also said,”Kis muhurat mein nikle thhe ghar se?” Finally after a long stop of 90 mins we crawled forward only to stop again at next station. The elderly couple heard my conversation with dad and asked,”Kahan derailment huyi hai?” I informed them about the incident and the news spread. The passengers were like… Here also we stopped for almost 2 hours. Finally the train moved and gained MPS and we passed an intermediate station without stopping. We reached Phulera outers and stopped. They had made small makeshift tents for pointsman to show the flags to loco pilot. At every 100 mts or so there was a person holding the flag. The Jodhpur line had a red flag in middle of tracks. Finally after 30 mins . We slowly entered Phulera jn. And I searched for some food. Only puri subzi was available, that also had a long line. I also joined the queue but I was also worried about train departig as it was an unscheduled halt of a late running train. I waited for 10 min but without food returned back. After around 45 mins guard whistled but didn’t show flag. The LP waa waiving green but the guard was only whistling. He was alerting the passengers that train is departing. After 3 whistles he waived green and we chugged out. We crawled on the tracks with pointsmen waiving green at every few mts. I saw the coaches of NR hidden behind a freight and I knew it was derailed coaches of pooja express. After 45 min at around 2 pm, we were at Jaipur PF 1, and here I bought puri subji for rs 20. The food was OK but it felt like awesome as I was damn hungry. At jaipur, berth no. 5 &6 got empty and I shifted to the SLB. It had biscuit packets and tea cups tucked here and there. I took them out and put them in their place, the dustbin. People want cleanliness to be maintained in train but they cannot even walk 2 steps to the dustbin and then they would blame govt for unclean train. The train was criusing at speeds around 100 and we were accompanied by vehicles on Jaipur Agra road. As we departed Alwar and gained speed, the train stopped abruptly and a RPF personnel who boarded in Jaipur was quick enough to open the gate and jump outside. Soon the guard also arrived and they were checking below the train. I thought something had been run over by the train. But soon all disappeared and the train departed with a whistle. The police personnel warned the general passengers not to get down every time the train stops or he would fine them for pulling the chain. He warned them about the possible accidents while boarding a moving train from ground level. Finally he closed the HA1 door and went inside. After some furious running after Rewari we entered Gurgaon with high rise buildings at horizon. Here many unauthorised passengers boarded the coach. Also since our coach was beside a GS, our coach was their prime target. Some 10 people boarded but they stood at the gate. They didn’t go inside. We stopped at Palam for few seconds where some crowd got down and finally at 1915 hrs, I was at Delhi cantt. I deboarded and took a snap of 6the fading duronto liveried EOG which had the name “ASHRAM EXPRESS”.

  
Kis muhrat me nikle the 😝😝
Acha hua muhrat jayda kharab nhi tha 😂
  
A train journey to each person will mean something different. To the school going child, it means a trip on a train, watching trains zoom by, waving to the people by the tracks. For a youngster on an educational tour(or any other tour) especially when travelling with his friends, he likens the train journey as the first leg of fun, frolic and freedom. Playing, cracking jokes, trying out the variety of food items that is served on the train. For a family, the train connects them from their home to the place of their relatives or their summer vacation spot. The household has woken up early in the morning, helped the mother prepare boxes of food items, and reach the station. Once, on board, the delicious whiff of the breakfast or lunch makes your mouth water and you wait for the Pantry anna to deliver your meal. On the business end, the Loco pilot , guard, station master, TTE, and the countless and unnamed gangmen are doing their duty silently, expecting no thanks but yet serving the nation by ensuring that the passengers reach their destinations safely.
On the 20th of May, I had booked a ticket from Chennai Central to Bangalore on a train which I love to hate,the Double Decker. The reason I love to hate this train is that it took away the AC Chair Car from a train which gave me my first ever train journey, way back in 1993 when I was an "innocent" toddler who was returning from Chennai to Bangalore and it was the first time my father used his privilege pass in AC coach. I remember him telling me that he got a promotion and with it, the AC Pass privilege on the day I was born a year ago in 1992.
But since the trip to Chennai was planned in the last minute, the Double Decker was my aapathbandhava and the waiting list was 40 and on 19th, the final status showed something which no railfan ever wants to see on his ticket, especially on a Double Decker -C3, L12, Aisle. So, now I was stuck with the prospect of 6 hours on the DD, in the lower deck and an aisle seat to boot. My only hope was that it should not be a reverse facing seat.
With that thought in mind, I was woken up on Sunday by the EOG of the Rockfort Express that was speeding to Chennai Egmore. Over a hot cup of filter coffee brewed by my aunt, grandpa 21319 AJJ WAM 4 with Kamban wished good morning and headed off towards the gateway to the south, as Egmore was known earlier.
I left my aunts home by 5:50, boarded a local at Kodambakam and was off towards Park. Egmore meanwhile, was buzzing with activity, what with a lot of arrivals and a couple of departures. The Green Warrior of TNP, 11003 was waiting for duties, and AJJ WAP 1 22008 was the power for the Dadar bound Super.
At Chennai Central, a large crowd greeted me, due to the arrivals of two heavyweights from two states. The Alappuzha Express that had 22664 LGD WAP 4 in the lead and the other was the Superfast from Hyderabad.
As a self confessed who lives to eat, it was unthinkable that I board the train without offering food to my stomach. Earlier, there used to be a Adayar Ananda Bhavan restaurant and Saravana Bhavan restaurant in Chennai which has sadly made way for a rather insipid Fast Track. The aroma of the hot sambar is truly missed.
And thus, the first innings of meals was had at the Jan Ahar. I ordered rava idli and vada but what I got was the normal idli disguised as a rava idli. The makers had spread a couple of carrot gratings over the idli and presented the same as rava idli with a vada that looked as though it had been made for the Lilliputian people. The accompanying lentil water and chutney was okayish.
The stomach appeased(to an extent), I made my way to platform 7 where the rake of the double decker was parked. The yellow red livery was fading away and the ripe mango was becoming a rotten mango. I somehow stuffed my luggage on the racks which was designed to hold nothing more than a Wallet and a handkerchief, made my way to the front to see the loco. A white beast trundled along and the loco was 30554, one of EDs stallions. As this loco was entering, on the adjacent platform, the train from the Wodeyar Kingdom, Kaveri Express pulled in. It's RSA partner, the Malgudi Express was to be my train from Bangalore to Kengeri.
The clock struck 7:25 and nothing happened. Another 5 minutes passed. Nothing yet. On platform 8, a white stallion entered gracefully, with the undisputed king, the Tamil Nadu Express. The king entered and we got the green to proceed. Clearing the points slowly, we crossed the trip shed at Basin Bridge, where a lot of P7s and P4s and the couple of G7s were taking rest.
Past Basin Bridge, the situation resembled a mix of highway run and Bangalore traffic, with alternate MPS runs and caution orders. Though some passengers were grumbling at this, I was not too bothered as I knew that these caution orders were for track maintenance.
Post Tiruvallur(Trivellore as it was called earlier, BTW, does this mean there was a di vellore on some corner of India in addition to Vellore), the breakfast seemed inadequate and I had nothing to munch along!! The good folk who sell the delectable items were nowhere to be seen.
As we neared Arakkonam, I remembered that my aunt had slipped in a packet of Milk Bikis biscuit which I had refused to take point blank. Mom or aunt, they are all the same. Insisting growing boys ought to eat.(Although these days, I show only horizontal growth, having crossed the growth limit for vertical growth a few years back).
From Arakkonam, the service began and I had another round of insipid breakfast of Idli and Upma with some "coffee". The towns of Sholinghur and Walajah sped past and we entered the junction nearest to my native Vellore, Katpadi. Slow negotiation of points , platform 1 entry and again a wave of nostalgia hit me. I've waited numerous times to board the C1 of a train that used to arrive at this very platform at the same time, years ago, when it had a P4 at the helm and those lovely AC Chair Car coaches had a decent amount of reclining, unlike the chairs of this DD. Food would be packed in plantain leaves and snacks in plastic boxes which would be washed and kept for the next train journey. But this time, my food would be served in casseroles and snacks in plastic covers.
After Katpadi, I slept all the way till Tyakal, with a brief moment of awakening at Jolarpettai where the 12610, the Express to Chennai from Bangalore was waiting for a crew change and an overtake by the Intercity from Coimbatore that had pulled into the adjacent platform. Three WAG 7s with their loads gave us a guard of honor as we left Jolarpettai.
When I awoke next, we were speeding past Tyakal with a 30 minute delay. The train then entered the suburbs of Bangalore with a stop at Krishnarajapuram where a lot of people alighted. Cantonment saw more people getting off, and as we left BNC, I checked NTES for the status of Malgudi Express. It said it was yet to depart YPR. Joy indeed and thus began a lot of prayers to the almighty, for the DD to reach SBC on time and I should catch Malgudi.
The Lord appeared to have heard my prayers, for the dreaded SBC home was dispatched with a brief halt and we were granted a smooth entry into PF 6. Simultaneously, Malgudi arrived on PF 9, and I ran to board that train, which took me to home, for a nice meal and rest.

  
You have penned your feelings for Brindavan in a wonderful way. Nice report. Enjoyed every word of it. :)

  
295 views
Thanks: 1
Jul 21 (19:40)
632375/Dinesh Gada   731 blog posts
Awesomeness indeed. Please don't write such good articles which I can't resist to read. You made me imagine every bit of your journey to the point that I forgot that I was reading it. Thanks a lot for such wonderful travelogue. Waiting for many such more.
  
Part-2: Train spotting at Jaipur Junction and ride to Ujjain
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Album link: click here
Part 1: /blog/post/2185540
24th December 2016:
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The 2 days 1 night stay at Jaipur was very happening and eventful. On 24th after alighting from Mysore-Jaipur Express, we spent whole day visiting places like Birla Mandir, Hawa mahal, Jantar mantar and city palace before doing some handloom shopping at Johri bazaar. Just when the day was about to have a happy ending, anti climax struck when my phone screen got damaged at the security checking premises in railway station:(. It was a heart breaking moment for me as it is the go to device for any photographer to click some runtime captures which are not possible with professional DSLR. Adding salt to the wound, the particular day was 1st anniversary of my phone.
25th December 2016:
-------------------------
Majority of the day was spent visiting Jal mahal, Amber fort and Nahargarh fort. After trekking down the hill from Nahargarh fort, we reached station around 5PM. Stepping into the station, our bodies were tired and legs were getting numb, but the aura created by the chugging alcos and roaring EMDs which were spread throughout the station like confetti has re energized me completely. Me and my dad walked towards Bais Godam side of the station on platform 1 and occupied a bench. I was getting a very good view of trains entering from Durgapura side. Just when I was getting ready for photography, my attention diverted towards my dad, who was already involved in train watching.
*Flashback*
During my childhood days back in my hometown Nellore, whenever possible, dad used to make out free time out of his busy schedule and used to take me to Penna river road bridge or Nellore railway station where we both used to sit on the bench and keep watching trains crossing our sight for hours. Those were the days where "eyes were the camera and brain was the memory card".
*back to Reality*
After watching him enjoying in his own zone, a sudden brain fade happened to me. Don't know whether what I did was right or wrong(it is up to you readers), I simply packed my camera and kept it in my bag. Now I was accompanying him in the old fashioned style of railfanning.
Now coming to the business, following were the spotting I could make before boarding 12974 Jaipur-Indore Express:
* LKO WDG4D 70555 was shunting 19711 Jaipur-Bhopal/Indore Express.
* Track on platform 3 was completely removed, owing to some works going on there.
* 5 hours late running 19408 Varanasi-Ahmedabad Express with its regular link VTA WDG3A arrived on platform 2.
* Single stack container with ABR WDG4 70148 in Short Hood Front mode towards Delhi side occupied platform 1.
* Both Varanasi-Ahmedabad Express and single stack container made simultaneous exit.
* 12465 Ranthambore Express arrived on platform 2 with BGKT WDP4 20090 in Loong Hood Front mode in lead.
* After the departure of Ranthmbore Express there was no significant action happening. Few locos like BGKT WDP4D 40094 and an Alco from NKJ shed were roaming through the station.
* 12196 Ajmer-Agra fort Intercity express arrived on platform 1 with ABR WDM3A 16607
* Right after the departure of Agra bound intercity, 12016 Ajmer-New Delhi Shatabdi express in ICF avataar with TKD WDM3A in lead occupied platform 1. EOG on rear side was on.
* Right at 6:10 PM 19711 Jaipur-Bhopal/Indore Express departed with RTM WDM3A
* Shatabdi departed after arrival of 14321 Ala Hazrat Express(via Bhildi) with IZN WDP4D 40131 arrived on platform 2.
* HWH WDM3A with mixed concor and BOXN rake occupied platform 1.
After the arrival of this freight rake, we decided to go out and have an early dinner. After having Jaipur famous Kachodi and Thali(dal, roti, rice, curd, aalo sabji and mutter curry) for dinner, we returned back to the station at 7:30 PM and headed towards clock room to collect our luggage. We then proceeded to waiting hall where my dad decided to sit and take rest till our train gets shunted on to the platform.
Meanwhile I decided to continue spotting trains:
* Delayed by 3 and half hours, 12413 Pooja Express arrived on to platform 1 with BGKT WDP4D 40088 in lead
* 19566 Dehradun-Okha Express with VTA alco in lead occupied platform 2.
* After the departure of Pooja Express, a BOXN rake led by SBI WDG4 in Long Hood Front mode occupied the platform.
Train No.: 12974
Source: Jaipur(JP)
Destination: Ujjain(UJN)
Meanwhile, announcement for 12974 Jaipur-Indore Express was made and platform 4 was dedicated. I slowly moved towards waiting hall and we both dragged our luggage on to platform 4. It was 8:45PM, all the passengers were eagerly waiting for the train and there were no signs of rake being shunted. Amidst all the happenings, came an announcement for the train with platform 5 dedicated. This announcement had little impact on the passengers but the follow up announcement: "Yaatriyon ke asuvidha ke liye khed hain" has created chaos. Me in my mind: "Arey yaar, asuvidha tho thumhara asuvidha wala announcement ne diya!!". Finally at 8:55PM BGKT WDP4D 40094 shunted the much awaited rake which was supposed to be boarded by us. The rake was standing in front of us, but everyone were waiting for doors to be opened. Exactly at 9:10PM doors were opened and we entered our coach S3. It was a 2010 made well maintained coach with charging ports available. Yet again, our side lower and side upper seats were on track side... Oh wait, it doesn't matter for a nocturnal ride right. After gaining a delay of 15 minutes at source itself we departed. There were only 25% passengers in my coach and the chart suggested that only 5-10 passengers would board at intermediate stops.
After departing from Durgapura, we decided to take rest so that we will be able to deal with another physically demanding day at offer. The run was very smooth, as there was no hindrance to my sleep. At 4:30 AM I observed that we were approaching Nagda Jn. Again after a brief nap I woke up at 5:15AM and we were cruising at decent pace. Meanwhile I asked my dad to wake up and started getting ready to alight at next stop Ujjain. We slowly skipped Shipra river and entered platform 1. Significant number of passengers alighted here and we made our way towards Retiring Room.

  
WDG 4 - this is goods train, peechhe container bhi dikh rahe hai
  
A FOND REMNESCIENCE OF A HISTORICAL RAILWAY LINE, SOON TO BE EXTINCT!
#######################################
It was a normal monday! I had been home for a while and went off to see my friend and Ex-IRI 'Hotshot' Suriender Singh...
Suriender had encountered a challan for rash-driving and had to surrender his 'Driving license' to ASDP Police...and had to pay off his fines to clear his name and ID :P
And being his 'jigra Bangali dost', he almost compelled me to accompany him to Asansol! So we set up for a chain journey to Asansol by catching up the MURI-DHN passenger up to DHN and then subsequent journey upto ASN would been be covered up by the RNC-HWH intercity...
So we bought an express ticket from SJA-ASN, how we made this journey is a tale for some other day,and I am attaching the same as a fond memory, as from tomorrow onwards such tickets won't be available in any of the plethora of stations lying on the DHN-CRP railway line stretch....
It is my deep regret that inspite of covering many journeys on this track section countless time, I never considered saving a ticket as a souveneir....
This line along with the DHN-JRI-PTD lines have given me some of my fondest childhood memories and at this juncture, when this line is said to become inoperational from tomorrow, and while I lie musing about it in Hyderabad, I confess that I have been overcome with moments of poigant sorrow and fond remnisciences....
Yes the line had to be closed, yes it's mere operational existence was akin to gambling with people's lives......but still deep down somewhere in my heart, there is a small child crying out, lamenting that a railway line that provided him with some of his most cherished memories....a railway line where he saw the last surviving legacy of the 'Steam Engines'......a railway line where he saw his favourite ALCOs being towed to trains like 'Shaktipunj' and 'Maurya'.....a railway line that made him a ferroequinologist in the first place......and most importantly a rail-line where his 'Late grandfather' would often spend puttering around as a guard of the great 'Eastern Railways'!!!
Alas, all good things must come to an end. At the stroke of midnight tonight a chapter, a legacy, a 130 year endeavour that started during the days of slavery in the 1880s under the reigns of 'Eastern Indian Railways' would fade into the pages of history..........
Farewell 'DHN-CRP' line, thee served well!!!
In forever fond remembrance
Arnab

  
Sir the line will be diverted or restored. So sir pl do not worry. The line will likely come back but might take 1-a few years.

  
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Jul 19 2017 (09:12)
884604/Shamelessly ALCOholic WDM2 forever~   6095 blog posts
The line may or may not be back...
Cause it is ECR & DHN, two mutually opposing entities!

  
Yes permanent closure of DHN-Kusunda Jn-Katrasgarh-Chandrapura line will be done as alternate alignment is ready

  
I think DC line is already closed
  
A Quick trip to Pune and Mumbai in the last week of May saw me go through a lot of hurdles. Plans, re-worked plans, ticket bookings, cancellations, it was all there. The plan was to return by Chalukya Express to Bengaluru. And my retiring room was booked in CST station. With all friends and acquaintances, including railway staff, advising against boarding a local to Dadar (The Chalukya originated from there), we decided to buy a First Class ticket and take a Door journey of the next available Mail/Express train, which happened to be the Kolhapur bound Mahalaxmi Express. Hauled by a WCAM3, we departed bang on the dot at 20:20 hrs, and ended up in Dadar pf5 at 20:35 hrs. With just 1 hr left for my train's departure, and with not much energy to hunt for places to have dinner, we ended up having Vada Pavs from a restaurant outside the station.
Chalukya Express departed right time at 21:30 hrs, mostly probably hauled by some WCAMx, totally drained of energy, i didn't bother checking the power. From Pune, a KJM EMD took over, later learned that it was WDP4D 40529. When i woke up the next morning, we were nearing Sangli. This route was always in my bucket list to be covered in day time. Well I was glad that I at-least got a part of it, Shindwane still eludes me.
Post Sangli, the route mesmerized me a lot. Especially the stretch till Belgavi, the repetitive curves, windmills near Raybag, the Krishna River bridge, the crops fields and other scenes unfolding all around, had me glued to my window. This train doesn't have Pantry, and surprisingly, didn't halt anywhere long enough for me to scout platforms in search of breakfast, leaving me at the mercy of the on board vendors. 2 plates of Vadas were all I could handle, and they were enough to remind of the home kitchen. Outside the train though, the crossings kept coming every now and then, in many occasions we were given the proceed ahead, while in a couple of instances, we were shown the loop, for passengers that too.
Rushing along, we met the lines from Goa and Dudhsagar Falls at Londa Jn, the heat was beginning to show, and I feared that fatigue might kick in. Thankfully, didn't happen. For lunch, I didn't take much of a risk, and ordered a Veg Thali from an online catering app, which was duly delivered in Hubballi Jn.
A Veg Thali consisting of A Cup of rice, 2 Vegetable varieties, A Dal, 4 rotis, 2 Gulab Jamuns, Salad n Pickle, was devoured as we swept past the dry cultivation lands surrounding the Hubballi Davangere section. Meanwhile, the King of the section, the Janshatabdi crawled past us at Hubballi south, scheduled to overtake us later in the night. The climate was cooler now, and the rains came down pouring as we neared Arsikere. In the meanwhile, Janshatabdi had reversed in Hubballi and managed to catch up with us, but was still far away for the overtake.
Post Arsikere, a string of dark stations greeted us, courtesy powercuts. And finally at Golahalli, we were looped and Janshatabdi overtook us at MPS. Though it was a scheduled overtake, I would have liked it to have happened much closer to Yeshvantpur.
Post the overtake, the speed was moderate and we crawled for the last 10 mins or so, and managed to arrive Yeshvantpur pf2 at 21:50hrs, delayed by 20 mins. The journey was both enjoyable and tiring, and i was so drained that I decided to nap in the cab itself on my way home. Chalukya Express is definitely one of those trains one can prefer for a group travel with some friends, not much disturbance from Unreserved travelers, the absence of a Pantry may make a difference to a few, but if food can be arranged from outside vendors and on board caterers, it would make up for it.
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    by: MCPNBR~  Today (12:42)


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    Jul 20 (03:28PM)


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