The day an EOG roared into Panvel...

The day was getting hotter, and I sweating it out the entire day. I had planned a visit to Panvel to watch the Rajdhani about a week back, and had IRFCAn Ranjeet to join me if possible. He confirmed his presence in the morning, and we decided to meet by 1800 at Panvel. I had some work in Nerul at ICICI Bank. I took a shower, and left home by 1615. I First visited the bank, finished all the work that I had there, and then rushed to Belapur Railway station. I took a ticket, and then went to the restaurant to have some snack. I took an EMU at 1719 ( a Wadala - Panvel Shuttle). The rake was the 6-month old #353-355. The rake is already looking too tired (just 6 months into running!). I reached Panvel by around 1735. I called up Ranjeet, and he was close to the station.
I went in and purchased Platform tickets for both of us, and just as I came out of the booking office, Ranjeet reached the station. We checked the reservation chart and then proceeded to the platform. Rajdhani was expected late by 25-30 minutes. We decided to stay on the FOB. Just then, a Kalyan WDG3A (#14983) pulled in with a Dead WAG7 (#27382 of Lallaguda) and a Container rake. We stood on the FOB and chatted for a while. Just while standing then, I noticed that the Kalyan WDG3A got detached, and the loco went ahead. The WAG7 was energized!
At around 1815, the 1696 Roha-Diva Passenger pulled in. The loco in-charge was WDM2 #16049 of Kalyan attached to the centre of the rake.
Just after the passenger pulled out, we decided to take a look at the WAG7. We went closer and found that the loco was indeed live and was waiting for the starter. We took a few images...


...and then went on to chat with the Loco pilot. The pilot was standing close to the loco. We asked him why his loco came dead from JNPT. He said that the Kalyan WDG3A was to come to PNVL, and the controls at JNPT instead asked the loco to be sent with this rake, so that the loco and the train would come with one clearance! The WDG3A was disconnected there and the WAG7 was energized. The pilots were to work upto Vasai Road now! The Container train received its starter shortly after that. The Rajdhani finally pulled in at 1839, with a delay of 34 minutes...


...the Loco was WDP3A #15515 of Golden Rock. I was overjoyed to spot a WDP3A after long two years! I saw a WDP3A last in April 2005!!! We both went shutter happy. We decided to go to Platform 2/3 (Rajdhani was on Platform 1), to get side views of the loco...


...The Radiator end was forward. Poor pilots! They will be treated to the heat of the loco all the way! The loco was re-fueled at Panvel. The train had 15 coaches [2x EOG; 1x 1A; 4x 2A; 7x 3A 1x PC]. Both the EOGs were in the Rajdhani-Shatabdhi Mixed livery. Coaches were mostly too old, and on some the paint has faded badly!

We decided to wait until the Deccan Odyssey goes by. The Rajdhani got her starter at 1850. A Mughasarai WAG7 (#27047) came in with a Container train at around 1900. I decided to leave at around 1915, since it was getting too late, and I have a working day tomorrow. Just as I was boarding my EMU, the PA system announced that the KR6 Diva Passenger is arriving soon. Just as I reached Belapur, Ranjeet messaged me to inform that the KR6 came in with an Erode WDM3A. [The link of this train is always a huge question mark!!!]. So that is the end to the Rajdhani fanning...Bye for the day!


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