Live TV soon on Shatabadi trains

According to a plan finalised by the Northern Railway, passengers of select Shatabadi trains will be offered the live TV service as part of an infotainment package.

“An eight-inch LCD TV screen will be installed behind every seat in executive class and chair cars on six Shatabdi trains starting from the capital. This will be a free of cost value-added service for the passengers who will have a good time catching up on news and entertainment, including cricket matches,” said a senior official.

The trains which are being considered for installation of TV sets include the Amritsar Shatabdi, Kalka Shatabdi, Lucknow Shatabdi, Bhopal Shatabdi, Ajmer Shatabdi and Dehradun Shatabdi.

Northern Railways had a trial run of the service on theKalka Shatabdi before deciding to introduce it on all six trains.

“Tenders will be floated soon for selecting the service providers. Envisaged on a PPP model, the service providers will install TV sets and provide manpower to run the system. The service will be operationalised by the service providers who will be allowed to air advertisements and share a part of the revenue with the railways,” said the official. While some Shatabdi trains have a total of 900 seats, other such trains have 1,100 seats. The number of coaches in each Shatabdi also varies.

“The annual payment for the service providers will be ranging between Rs 13 lakh and Rs 18 lakh depending on the number of seats and coaches in that particular train,” said the official.

It is estimated that the railways will earn Rs 27 lakh approximately a year per seat from the scheme.

“The infotainment package is being offered as additional amenities to passengers and it is a win-win deal for passengers, railways and the agency providing the service,” he added.

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