Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], September 25 (ANI): Union Minister of State (MoS) V Muraleedharan and several Bharatiya Janata Party workers welcomed the Kasaragod-Thiruvananthapuram Vande Bharat Express train that reached the district's Central Station late Sunday evening around 11 pm.
Muraleedharan, while speaking to ANI, said that this is the first time in the history of Indian Railways that a train has become a celebrity.
"The second Vande Bharat allocated for Kerala which was inaugurated by PM Modi has travelled and reached Thiruvananthapuram. It has been a lifetime experience for everyone who travelled on this train. The thousands of people who gathered at various railway stations, thousands of people including school children who travelled in the train, every one of them told me how they loved, how they cherished the travel. There were thousands of people who were taking selfies with the train...Perhaps this is the first time in the history of India, in the history of Indian Railways that a train has become a celebrity," he said.
The second semi-high-speed train of Kerala was among the nine Vande Bharat Express, which were flagged off by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday.
People welcomed the Vande Bharat on its arrival at the Thiruvananthapuram Central Station by clicking pictures and showering flower petals.
"I must thank the Prime Minister for providing this world-class facility to the state of Kerala," added Muraleedharan.
The train will operate six days a week except Tuesday from Kasaragod-Thiruvananthapuram up and down. It will take 8 hours and 5 minutes to reach its destination. The second train dedicated to the state will be operated via the Alappuzha route while the first Vande Bharat is being operated via Kottayam.
Apart from Kasargod-Thiruvananthapuram, the other new trains flagged off on Sunday, are Udaipur-Jaipur Vande Bharat Express, Tirunelveli-Madurai-Chennai Vande Bharat Express, Hyderabad-Bengaluru Vande Bharat Express, Vijayawada-Chennai (via Renigunta) Vande Bharat Express, Patna-Howrah Vande Bharat Express, Rourkela-Bhubaneswar-Puri Vande Bharat Express, Ranchi-Howrah Vande BharatExpress and Jamnagar-Ahmedabad Vande Bharat Express.
The Vande Bharat train is an initiative of the government under PM Modi's vision of 'Make in India'. (ANI)