Famous train names like Rajdhani, Shatabdi, Gatiman and Garib Rath may become a thing of past. In a major step, Indian Railways may take step in direction of branding trains on products like chips, cold-drinks, tooth paste, chayawanprash, shampoo, soap, surf, oil etc in coming days.
The announcements at railway platform may carry the name of products as well. The Indian Railways has made new plans to increase the income through advertisements. As per the plans, any company can buy media rights of any train.
Advertisements may also reflect inside and outside of trains. According to Railway Ministry’s Public Relations Officer Ved Prakash, the branding is getting started with trains first. If it is successful, then Indian Railways may also think towards fixing brands before name of stations.
The Railway Ministry has been working towards this step in last one year. But, after Prime Minister’s recent push for increasing income through commercial advertising, the Railway Ministry has increased the pace of implementation.
The decision to associate brands with trains was also initiated in time of UPA government. At that time, advertisement of Idea Cellular was put in Prayagraj Express. At that time, Indian Railways got benefitted through that move. But, in the lack of proper policy, the plan somehow failed to get success.
To improve the financial health of Indian Railways, Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu has been taking steps but most of the steps are increasing burden on traveller’s pocket. As per Indian Railways, the decision to do branding of trains may become successful in increasing income.
The plan also include giving space for ATMs. In first stage, 2,400 ATM space for different stations will be given. Apart from this, Indian Railways will also work towards commercialising famous spots in their network.