Rajdhani Express turns 54.
The first Rajdhani ran between Howrah and New Delhi on March 3, 1969. Many things have changed since it’s inception. Both the interior as well as the exterior have changed drastically.
On the 50th birth anniversary of the Rajdhani Express, the Indian Railway Catering & Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) had organised a Special treat for passengers travelling by 12301 Howrah-New Delhi Rajdhani Passengers travelling in AC-II and AC-III tier were served fish fry or vegetable cutlets depending on their preferences alongwith rosogollas(Bengali sweet). As a special treat, the continental menu was served to First AC passengers alongwith Caramel Custard.
Debashis Chandra, group general manager (east), IRCTC will be in-charge of entire programme. He is the son of Ratan Chandra Chandra, the first Rajdhani’s catering inspector (My father who traveled by Rajdhani Express since its launching was very fond of Chandra) I too have vivid memories of Chandra coming and asking how was the food personally, always with a smile. He used to give toffies and chocolates. Those were the golden era of Rajdhani Express. My favourite was the chair-car days. Ratan Chandra Chandra passed away in 2016.
Rajdhani Express has come a long way since then and during these years, many new trains enroute to various cities were introduced like – Dibrugarh Rajdhani Express, Guwahati Rajdhani Express, Bhubaneswar Rajdhani Express, Mumbai Rajdhani Express etc. Sealdah Rajdhani was also introduced a few years ago.
Today Rajdhani Express may have lost its glory and dignity but in ghose days it used to considered as an elite train.