INDIAN Railways (IR) will begin phasing in a fleet of 500 new sleeping cars from April 1, as part of a modernisation of its premium long-distance services. 

The Tejas sleeping cars are being manufactured at both the Integrated Coach Factory, Chennai, and the Modern Coach Factory, Raebareli, and will be phased in throughout the 2021-22 financial year. 

A fleet of Tejas sleeping cars was previously put into service operating Northeast Frontier Railway’s Agartala - Delhi Rajdhani Express on February 15 this year. 

The coaches are designed for 200km/h operation, however few routes are currently capable of allowing speeds in excess of 130km/h.  

The coaches have a stainless-steel underframe with air-spring suspension bogies equipped with condition monitoring sensors for wheels and bearings. 

The new fleet will include a mix of first class AC, second class AC and 3-tier AC vehicles. The coaches will be equipped with automatic plug doors, air-conditioning, vacuum bio-reactor toilets, passenger information displays, CCTV and fire safety systems.  

Each compartment is also fitted with charging points and reading lights for each passenger, with roller blinds replacing the curtains found in older coaches.