Jul 17, 2017

Railways Launches 'SAARTHI' App, Solar Train: 10 Things To Know

Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu launched a new integrated mobile app 'SAARTHI - synergised advanced application rail travel help and information' for passengers.

The solar panels are fitted on the roof of coaches.
Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu on Friday launched a new integrated mobile app "SAARTHI - synergised advanced application rail travel help and information" for passengers. This new app will allow passengers to book tickets, enquiry, on-board cleaning and ordering meal on a single platform. The new SAARTHI app also includes features such as safety for women, complaint facility and suggestion for improvement, Mr Prabhu said. It is believed to provide better customer experience, he added. Earlier in the day, the minister has also unveiled the country's first solar powered DEMU (Diesel Electric Multiple Unit) train.
Here are the key things to know:

  1. Users now don't need to download multiple railway apps as the new SAARTHI appwill allow them to perform various functions.
  2. They can also book air ticket through the app. Mr Prabhu also announced a quota facility for differently-abled people in 3AC coach and extending the advance booking period for foreigners to 365 days from present 120 days.
  3. A lower berth in a 3AC coach will be reserved for physically-challenged people and the middle for the individual accompanying them. But, there will be only one such berth in the 3AC coach of a train.
  4. The quota provision which was only in the sleeper class (2 berths) has now been extended to the 3AC as well.
  5. While booking tickets through the app, users can also share their feedback.
  6. In a move to promote the use of cleaner fuels while launching the first solar powered DEMU train, Mr Prabhu said, "Indian Railways is trying to increase use of non-conventional sources of energy."
  7. "First rake has been commissioned and based at Shakurbasti DEMU shed in Delhi of Northern Railway. Twenty-four more coaches will be fitted with this system within the next six months," the ministry said in a statement. 
  8. According to the ministry's estimates, a solar-powered train with six trailer-coaches has the potential to save about 21,000 litres of diesel and thereby effect a cost saving of Rs. 12 lakh every year.
  9. The entire electrical needs of the train are fulfilled by power produced from solar panels fitted on the roof of coaches.
  10. "More solar-powered trains may be inducted in future," Mr Prabhu added. (With Agency Inputs)