Railway want PPP mode for high speed trains

November 4th, 2011 - 6:33 pm ICT by IANS  

Mamata Banerjee New Delhi, Nov 4 (IANS) Stating that a high speed rail corridor can become a catalyst for India’s economic growth, Minister of State for Railways K.H. Muniyappa Friday stressed the public-private partnership (PPP) mode for investment and execution of the plan.

“The railways desire the public-private partnership mode for investment and execution for the high speed corridor and draw on frontier technologies incorporating the highest standards of safety and service quality,” said Muniyappa.

He was speaking at a seminar on “High Speed Trains - Issues and Options”, organised by the Institution of Engineers (India) and Institution of Railway Electrical Engineers (IREE) here.

The junior minister said the railways had identified six high speed corridors and initiated action on pre-feasibility studies for them. Sources, however, said it would take around 10 years before any such project becomes a reality.

Former railway minister Mamata Banerjee in her budget speech of 2010-11 had announced setting up of a National High Speed Rail Authority for planning, standard setting, implementing and monitoring of construction of high speed passenger rail corridors.

According to Muniyappa, some 40,000 km of high speed rail tracks are under construction around the world.

Kul Bhushan, member (electrical) of the Railway Board, said “at present the maximum speed of passenger trains on Indian railway network is 150 km per hour”.

With the commissioning of dedicated freight corridors, routes would be upgraded to run passenger trains at 200 km per hour.

Bhushan said a study was being carried out by Japan for upgrading speed of New Delhi-Mumbai route to 200 km per hour. Should that happen, the 1400-km distance between the two megapolises could be covered under eight hours with a couple of stops en route.

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