Mumbai, May 17: The Mumbai-Delhi Rajdhani Express, one of the fastest and most iconic of train services of the Indian Railways, on Tuesday completed 50 years since its inaugural run on the same day in 1972, the occasion being marked with a celebration at Mumbai Central station ahead of departure, a Western Railway official said.

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It was the second Rajdhani Express for the country, the first being the one between Howrah and Delhi that started in 1969. It covers the 1,383 kilomete distance between the country's capital and commercial capital in 15 hours and 32 minutes, traversing through seven states. Western Railway To Get Vistadome Coach for Mumbai-Gandhinagar Shatabdi Express From April 11.

It had four chair cars, one AC first class coach and two AC sleeper coaches on its inaugural run on May 17, 1972 and used to operate two times a week, while its frequency increased to three days a week in 1975, and the coaches increased to 18, hauled by two locomotives, or what started being called "double-headed Rajdhani", from October 2, 1981.

The frequency increased to four days a week from November, 1981, to five days a week in 1985, six days a week from 1989 and it became an all-days-of-the-week service from October 2, 2000. It is the first train to have the all-new Tejas-type sleeper coaches, while the earlier LHB coaches were in service since December, 2002. To mark the 50th anniversary of the much-loved train, WR issued a special postal cover and a VIP album in the presence of Principal Chief Commissioner, Mumbai CGST Ashok Kumar Mehta and Chief Postmaster General, Maharashtra Circle Veena R Srinivas. Mumbai Rains 2022: Central Railway To Demolish 150-Year-Old British-Era Carnac Bridge Before Monsoon Season.

WR also presented souvenir tickets and mementos to passengers apart from clicking instant photographs to serve as a keepsake. "Ninety-year-old Qamruzzaman Sarang, who travelled on the inaugural run, is undertaking the journey today as well," WR chief public relations officer Sumit Thakur said. "Rajdhani Express offers impeccable services, fastest speed, punctuality and sumptuous catering services,” Thakur added.

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