Freight corridor: Rs 17,500 crore tenders to be finalised by March

VADODARA: Tenders worth Rs 17,500 crore related to dedicated freight corridor (DFC) project will be finalised by March, junior Railway Minister Manoj Sinha said.

Talking to reporters here, he said most of the land acquisition and statutory clearances for DFC have been completed or obtained. Project execution has also begun with the award of civil contracts for 1,100km route.

The ambitious Rs 81,459-crore project envisages freight rail lines along the western corridor between Delhi and Mumbai and the eastern corridor between Ludhiana and Howrah, running through Delhi.

Tenders worth Rs 17,500 crore on the western corridor will be finalised by March, he said.

Sinha, on a two-day visit of Vadodara division of Western Railway, said work on DFC, meant for faster movement of goods, will be completed in phases between 2017 and 2019.

Railways is constructing the western corridor from Dadri to Jawaharlal Nehru Port (1,502km) and the eastern corridor from Ludhiana to Dankuni (West Bengal) (1,840kms).

“Railways is constructing separate corridors to speed up transportation of goods. Prevailing scenario is not very good and everybody wants faster freight movement.” 

Sinha said currently goods trains are moving at a speed of 25/26 km per hour. The speed will go up to 100 km per hour on the DFC.”

The entire western corridor is being funded by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), while the World Bank is providing financial assistance for the eastern corridor from Mughalsarai to Ludhiana.

Seeking private investment in rail infrastructure, Sinha asked the industry to come forward to participate in capacity augmentation. “You can invest liberally in rail infrastructure development as Railways need big investment.”

“Due to various constrains, expansion of Railway network could not take place while demand for more trains and amenities from the people kept on increasing. “You (private sector can invest liberally in rail infrastructure development as Railways need big investme ..

PMO is regularly monitoring major infrastructure projects, especially those concerning Railways, he said.

“We are also working on setting up the first Railway University of the country at Vadodara. Educational Consultants India, a PSU, is finalising the project,” Sinha said.

Gujarat Chief Minister Anandiben Patel has promised full cooperation to the Railway Ministry in setting up the university which will promote research, he said.

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