Kolkata (West Bengal) [India], September 21 (ANI): West Bengal is set to get two more Vande Bharat Express trains as Prime Minister Narendra Modi will virtually flag off nine such trains on Sunday.

PM Modi will inaugurate the Vande Bharat train service between the Patna-Howrah and Ranchi-Howrah routes and the twin cities of Howrah-Kolkata in West Bengal through video conferencing on September 24, said Railways officials

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The Railways have already begun preparations for the semi high-speed train operations on the Patna-Howrah route with strengthening of tracks on Patna-Jhajha-Asansol- Burdwan -Howrah main line.

According to the officials, the new rakes for the Patna-Howrah and Ranchi-Howrah routes will have 25 added features, The train will cover a distance of 535 km in approximately 6 hours and 30 minutes, making it the fastest direct rail connection between Patna and Kolkata.

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The first Vande Bharat Express was flagged off on February 15, 2019, by the Prime Minister, running between New Delhi and Varanasi. Manufactured at the Integral Coach Factory (ICF) in Chennai, the train set symbolizes the 'Make-In-India' initiative and showcases India's engineering prowess.

The project to manufacture indigenous semi-high-speed train sets began in mid-2017, and within 18 months, the ICF Chennai completed Train-18. India's first semi-high-speed train was renamed Vande Bharat Express in January 2019 to emphasize its made-in-India status. The train achieved a maximum speed of 180 kmph on the Kota-Sawai Madhopur section. (ANI)

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