News Desk: The Government of India and the Ministry of Railways has invited request for qualifications (RfQ) from private companies to run 151 modern passenger trains on the basis of Public-Private partnership.
The Indian Railway will then short-list the bidders to run trains on 109 pairs of routes across the country.
The 109 original destination pairs of routes have been formed into 12 clusters across the Indian Rail network and each train shall have a minimum of 16 coaches.
The trains shall be designed to have a top speed of 160 Kmph. This means that the trains will be faster than many trains which operational right now.
Indian Railways took this initiative in order to introduce modern technology rolling stock with reduced maintenance, less transit time, provide enhanced safety. This initiative will also create more job opportunities, provide world-class travel experience to its passengers, and will also help in reducing the demand-supply deficit in the passenger transportation sector.
The adjustment period for the project will be 35 years. The private companies will have to pay Indian Railways a fixed haulage charges, energy charges according to actual usage and a share in the Gross Revenue determined through a transparent bidding process. The trains will still be operated by the drivers and guards of Indian Railways and the safety certification, infrastructure will also remain with Indian Railways.
The project would involve a private sector investment of about ₹ 30,000 Crore.
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