Indian Railways is planning to implement five digit numbers in place of the existing four digit numbers for all trains from December 20. The new number scheme for the train numbers have been advertised on IRCTC and other websites.
The existing express trains numbers shall largely continue unchanged but shall now be prefixed with first digit of 1. The passenger trains shall be first numbered as per the present four digit train numbering scheme.
To this four digit number, a fifth digit shall be prefixed as digit 0 for special trains, digit 5, 6 and 7 for conventional passenger trains, MEMU and DEMU trains respectively. Suburban services in Kolkata shall begin with digit 3, in Mumbai with digit 9 and in other parts with digit 4.
It is now proposed to capture all passenger trains running over Indian Railways for various software applications by giving them a unique number. Thus, there is need to shift to 5-digit train numbering scheme from a 4-digit train numbering scheme as Indian Railways presently runs over 11,000 passenger carrying trains on an average per day while 4-digit scheme can have train numbers only upto 9,999.