Dr Jitendra Flags Off ‘Vande Bharat’ With Stops At Udhampur, Kathua
UDHAMPUR, February 13 : In a ceremony full of excitement and jubilation, Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh today flagged off the maiden regular run of Vande Bharat Express train with stops at Udhampur and Kathua respectively, both of which stations happen to be a part of his Lok Sabha constituency.
Terming it as a historic decision of the government, Dr Jitendra Singh said it was possible only due to the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi’s special attention and priority that he has accorded to the J&K region for its fast-paced development.
Dr Jitendra Singh today flagged off the maiden stoppage of the Train from the Udhampur Station early this morning and travelled on it to reach Kathua Railway Station, where the train made its first stoppage.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Jitendra Singh said with this facility, Prime Minister Modi has fulfilled the demand of the local people and commuters for providing stoppage of Vande Bharat Train at Kathua station. He said this achievement was not a small feat as the entire process of ticketing and haltage was completed within just one-and-half-month period without tinkering with the mandated eight-hour journey time of the Vande Bharat Train.
Dr Jitendra Singh also expressed his gratitude to Prime Minister Modi on behalf of the local people, for acceding to their demand to change the name of the Udhampur Railway Station to Martyr Captain Tushar Mahajan Railway Station, saying that it is for the first time in the country that a railway station has been named after a martyred soldier. Dr Singh also informed that in an earlier notification, the word Udhampur had got inadvertently dropped but has been rectified naming the station as Martyr Captain Tushar Mahajan Railway Station Udhampur.
Dr Jitendra Singh added that the railway route to J&K is unique as it is among the few that have two Vande Bharat Trains chugging off, whereas many places in the country are yet to avail this state-of-the-art transport facility which was unveiled in 2015. He said the pair of Vande Bharat Trains were sanctioned for J&K after the trains of the same make were dedicated to Varanasi, the Parliamentary constituency of Prime Minister Modi.
The Union Minister stated that Udhampur, which a major centre of the military in North India, will turn into a big junction in future, particularly when the Kashmir Valley gets connected to the rest of the country via the train in the next 3-4 months. Both Udhampur and Kathua Railway Stations will hold great significance in the coming decade, Dr Singh added.
Sharing the revised time schedule of the two Vande Bharat Trains, with Udhampur and Kathua as stoppages, Dr Jitendra Singh said it has been done keeping in mind commuters’ comfort. He said travelers from Kathua and Udhampur can now have lunch in Delhi whereas travelers from Delhi can have dinner at the next destination.
The present departure timing of Train number 22478 from Katra is 6 am which has been changed to 5.50 am. The train will reach Udhampur railway station (Martyr Captain Tushar Mahajan Station) at 6.14 am and start further journey at 6.16 am.
As per revised timings, the train will reach Jammu railway station at 7.10 am and start after a two minute halt. It will reach Kathua at 8.03 am and start at 8.05 for further journey towards New Delhi.
Likewise, Train number 22477 from New Delhi will reach Kathua at 8.45 pm and depart at 8.47 pm. It will reach Jammu station at 9.45 pm and halt for two minutes. The train will reach Udhampur at 10.42 pm and start at 10.44 pm to reach Katra at 11.15 pm.