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Maintenance Units, Motor Coaches et al
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Villivakkam is a suburb township west of Chennai, and the long yards beyond the station serve to hold rake-sets fresh out of the assembly line of Integral Coach Factory, Perambur. A Chennai Central-bound EMU crosses a strange combination - an EMU end-coach sandwiched between IInd seater express coaches!


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The funny countenance of this train is actually its rear :) The elegant 6057/58 Sapthagiri Express has a charming yellow/green livery with a matching WAM4 locomotive. This train traverses the short but important link between Chennai Central and Tirupati, home to one of the most visited temples in India, the Balaji temple on the Tirumala hills. The train undergoes a reversal at Renigunta (RU), and to minimize delays on account of locomotive movements, the last coach of this train is equipped with a driver's cab, that lets the driver operate the locomotive, pushing from the other end. The train waits with one squinted eye at Arrakkonam Jn (AJJ) in March '98.


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A few uncoupled coaches of the Amritsar Swarna Shatabdi wait in the siding at New Delhi station, in Feb 2001. These IRY-IR20 carriages feature a corrugated extrerior and wider windows. The restrooms are shifted away from the coach ends.


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The 2004 Lucknow Shatabdi Express passes a pair of railway maintenance vehicles outside Kanpur. The green one is an advanced diesel-powered overhead equipment (OHE) maintenance car, and the small trolley on the left is a powerless gang vehicle, with no traction. Many trunk routes prohibit the usage of these antiquated trolleys.


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An unnamed maintenance vehicle waits at Chiplun station on the Konkan line as the Madgaon Mandovi Express meets its counterpart. This strange unit seems too small to have any major functional purpose. Note the odd variety of liveries on the heavily used day train.


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It is a sorry sight indeed to watch steam engines disappear from the railway lines that were once their kingdom. The MG steam tender in this picture stands in late '97, stripped of valor, demoted to serve an emergency railway crane at Guntakal station. MG has since disappeared from Guntakal. Fellow IR fan Shankar gave this pic a Solid 24 ct Gold tag on his beautiful Showcase site :) Thanks Shankie!

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