Bhubaneswar: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will flag off the first Vande Bharat Express (VB) Train from Puri to Howrah route on May 18.
Shri Modi will launch the high-speed train service through videoconferencing mode from New Delhi while Governor Ganeshi Lal, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw will be present at Puri Railway Station.
MP Pinaki Mishra and MLA Jayanta Kumar Sarangi will grace the occasion as Guests of Honour at Puri Railway Station.
The Prime Minister will also lay foundation stone for Puri and Cuttack Station Redevelopment Work, inaugurate Beechupalli-Jhartarbha New Railway Line and dedicate Sambalpur-Titlagarh doubling line, Angul-Sukinda new line, Rourkela-Jharsuguda & Manoharpur-Bondamunda third line to the Nation.
Besides, 100% Electrification in Odisha State will also be inaugurated at Puri Railway Station.
The Vande Bharat Express Train will cover the 500 km Puri-Howrah route in around 5 hours 30 minutes. At present, the Shatabdi Express is the fastest train on this route, taking around 7 hours 35 minutes to cover the same distance.
The officials informed that the Puri-Howrah train will make stoppages at Khurda Road Junction, Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Jajpur-Keonjhar Road, Bhadrak, Balasore, and Kharagpur.
The trial run of the Vande Bharat express had taken place on April 28 and April 16 this year and those were successful.
Earlier, Commerce and Transport Minister Tukuni Sahu had demanded the Railway Minister for introduction of the Vande Bharat express train on Puri-Howrah, Puri-Rourkela and Bhubaneswar-Hyderabad routes.
First Vande Bharat Express was launched in 2019. Vande Bharat Express is faster with more prominent features than any other train in the country. The train was first launched for travel from the national capital Delhi to Varanasi. Now it will operate on several different routes across the country.