CHENNAI: About 70 percent of berths and seats added in the trains across the country in the last five years are in the air-conditioned classes, revealed the data sourced by ‘Express’ through RTI.
The Indian Railways has increased the total number of seats and berths from 49.02 crore to 54.37 crore between April 2014 and March 2019. The addition of 5.35 crore seats and berths was by introduction of new trains and argumentation of existing trains.
However, a whopping 3.73 crore berths (70 %) were added in various air-conditioned classes . Only 1.61 crore (30%) is in the non-AC category.Rail users say that by replacing the sleeper coaches with three-tier AC coaches in the highly demanded sections, the railways has been creating artificial demand for AC classes. This was used as justification to introduce premier trains across India, rued T Mohammed Mubeen, former member of Divisional Rail Users Consultative Committee, Chennai.