Driven by the idea to augment country’s capability against the novel coronavirus, the Indian Railways has converted 5,231 non air-conditioned coaches into isolation coaches and offered these to be used as Covid Care Centres (CCCs) in accordance with the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW).
According to the ministry’s note issued on Friday, these facilities are to be used when state facilities are overwhelmed. This is part of the integrated Covid plan developed by MoHFW and Niti Aayog. More than 5,000 coaches are ready for any such contingency.
Earlier, the railway authorities had discussed the feasibility of having air-conditioned coaches with the Niti Aayog and the health ministry before finally deciding to offer non air-conditioned coaches for the Covid patients.
A consensus has emerged against having air-conditioned coaches as it is likely to cause potential transmission risk of the Covid-19 virus through AC ducting.