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Railways to green flag Rs 1 lakh crore train set bids, Infra News, ET Infra


The Indian Railways has chalked out a plan to purchase new trains worth ₹1 lakh crore over the next few years to cater to the rising demand in the passenger travel segment on the national transporter, Union Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw told ET.The national transporter has spent 70% of the ₹2.4 lakh crore capital budget for FY24, he said adding that track laying was also progressing in line with the plan.

“The goal is to replace ageing rolling stock for which 7,000-8,000 new train sets will be needed. Tenders for the same will be called in the next 4-5 years. This will entail floating train procurement tenders worth around Rs 1 lakh crore which will be honoured over the next 15 years by replacing the older rolling stock,” Vaishnaw said.

The move is part of the larger upgrade of Railways that seeks to make more trains available for passengers and goods by freeing up tracks and increasing the number of trips.

“We will need an investment of close to ₹12 lakh crore in the Indian Railways to cater to the current level of economic growth by 2030,” he said.

The Railways carried out significant structural and procedural reforms to hasten capital spending, Vaishnaw said pointing to the high utilisation of its capital budget.

The capital budget is earmarked for a major facelift lined with the upgrade of the key infrastructure including train, track, safety tech and stations.

Freeing up tracks
He said completion of the entire 1337 kilometre (km) Eastern Dedicated Freight Corridor is catalysing the development of new industrial hubs and Gati Shakti Cargo Terminals. Almost 80% of the Western Dedicated Freight Corridor has completed too. Together these will free up tracks for speedier passenger and goods movement.

Zero waiting list
The Indian Railways is currently running 10,754 daily train trips and plans to add 3000 more to bring down the waiting list to zero. The national transporter is already running 568 more trips compared with pre-COVID-19 years. This enables the Railways to ferry 700 crore passengers every year, a number which is projected to rise to 1000 crore by 2030. “There needs to be a 30% increase in the number of trips to eliminate the issue of waitlisting in the passenger category – except during peak demand months – by the end of this decade,” the minister said.

The proposed train procurement orders will come with maintenance contracts and conditions that mandate them being made in India by harnessing Railway infrastructure.

The minister said track laying was also progressing in line with the plan.

“We expect to close the current fiscal with 5500 to 6000 kms of new tracks, which is 16 kilometres (km) per day. Comparably, 5243 kilometres of tracks were laid in fiscal 2022-23 (14 km per day) ” he said.

  • Published On Dec 15, 2023 at 08:39 AM IST

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