Indian Railways has deployed its first COVID-19 isolation coach at Shakur Basti in New Delhi for suspected novel coronavirus patients. A rake with 10 coaches has been deployed and it can accommodate 160 patients. The rake has nine non-AC coaches for patients while one AC coach for medical staff, said an official from Ministry of Railways.
On the request from the Delhi Government, the Railways has deployed one rake containing 10 coaches of COVID isolation coaches for treat COVID-19 patients, said the officer. The rake was placed at coach washing area at Shakur Basti Railway Station and the Delhi Government will deploy health care staff.
The Indian Railway converted 5,231 non-AC sleeper and General coaches as COVID-19 coaches to supplement hospital isolation beds. The Railways also identified 215 major stations across the country for its deployment and asked the states to utilise it to treat mild and very mild COVID-19 patients.
Since no states have come forward to utilise it, the Railway Board has decided to convert around 3,100 coaches as normal and deploy it for Shramik Special trains as there is a huge demand for non-AC coaches. However, around 2,131 coaches will remain as isolation coaches and will be given to states as and when they demand, said an official in the railways.