New Delhi, Feb 14 : The process of doubling and electrification of new lines will be completed by 2024 that would help the Indian Railways to run at least 1500 new trains, Railway Board Chairman Vinod Kumar yadav said on Friday.. Out of the 1500 new trains, 150 will be given to private operators while rest of the trains will be run by the Railways.
"The Indian Railways currently runs about 13,000 passenger trains and about nine thousand freight trains. With the aim of increasing the capacity of their network, the railways have nearly tripled their annual capital investment since 2014. 58 super critical projects with congestion in the network have been taken top priority out of which work on eight has been completed. Work on the remaining 50 will be completed by 2 March 2022." the Railway Board Chairman said.
He said that 60 percent of the country's rail traffic runs on these blocks. Mr. Yadav said that the Railway Board has strategically allocated 89 percent of the funds for the projects which will be completed in next two years. "Apart from this, 3800 crore rupees have been given for a total of four railway projects of national importance in Jammu and Kashmir and North East. About 11 percent of the amount has been given for new projects so that prior to their implementation, the formalities such as land acquisition etc. can be completed", the Chairman said.
The Railway Board believes that after the completion of formalities and necessary preparations, the work of laying the line will be started which will be completed in two to three years. He said that the 111-km section from Katra to Banihal in Jammu and Kashmir will be ready by June 2022, which will have 97-km long tunnels and 66-km escape tunnels. He also informed that between 2014 and 2019, 13 thousand 124 kilometers of doubling and tripplication of new lines and change of work has been done. "At present, 9.85 km of tracks are being laid every day.
During this period 115 projects have been completed, at a cost of Rs 71712 crore. Although some inherited lines will be retained", he said. "All works will be completed by March 2024", Mr Yadav asserted. Responding to the criticism about private operators running premium class trains, the Chairman said that the decision to give only 150 trains to private operators, out of 1500 new trains, is not irrational anywhere. The rest of the trains and the present day Rajdhani, Duronto and Shatabdi will not be given to private operators at all. (UNI)