Many corridors have been studied for the feasibility of bullet trains, such as the Delhi-Chandigarh, Delhi-Mumbai, Delhi-Kolkata and Bengaluru-Chennai routes.
In sync with the government’s Bharatmala highways development program, the Indian Railways is set to announce Rs 10 lakh-crore high-speed train corridors' construction plan, covering almost 10,000 kilometres to connect the major cities of India.
The new rails would be atop the existing ones or will be built on rail land parallel to existing routes, on which the new trains would run at the speed of 200 km per hour, according to a rail ministry official.
The official told Economic Times, “The plan would be announced in April. We will unveil the routes that would be connected, along with the funding mechanism.”
Indian Railways plans to invite major global players for large tenders of the project and will try to keep the cost of the construction minimal. To minimise cost, Railways plans to build double lines on single pillars. Railways will get special aluminium coaches designed so that trains can run on electric traction.
This project will be funded by borrowings from financial institutions and agencies along with monetizing land bank. The official said, “The operational profitability of such projects is high as the revenues would also come from non-fare box such as commercial exploitation of stations as Metro has done.” Railways minister Piyush Goyal has implored his ministry to work with speed, scale and skill to implement these projects as early as possible0.At present, a 534 km-long bullet train corridor is being constructed between Mumbai and Ahmedabad which is expected to be completed by 2022. The project costs over Rs 1 lakh crores.
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