The Railways will go for global shopping to acquire high speed locomotives with a Rs 500 crore project to run trains at 200 km per hour on Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi-Kolkata routes. Speed is the latest matra for railways as it is going ahead with the action plan to upgrade Delhi-Kolkata and Delhi-Mumbai rail corridors enabling the track fit for 200 kmph train run. “We will float the global tender for acquiring 10 high speed electric locomotives, which can haul trains at 200 kmph and beyond, from the market shortly,” said a senior Railway Ministry official. At present, Rajdhani, Shatabdi and Duronto trains are running up to 130 kmph. Only one train, Gatimaan Express, is running at 160 kmph between Delhi and Agra.
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“The transfer of technology of the high power locomotives and its maintenance will be the responsibility of the successful bidder, besides supplying 10 locos to railways,” said the official. The Rs 500 crore project involves purchase of high speed locomotives, transfer of technology and maintenance for 13 years as per the bidding requirement.
The high power locomotives are expected to haul 22-24 coaches train at 200 kmph on Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi-Kolkata routes to reduce the travel time. In order to match the loco capacity, railways has started the manufacturing of Linke Hofmann Busch (LHB) coaches with speed potential of 200 kmph.
The high speed LHB coaches are about to be turned out from Rail Coach Factory at Kapurthala. Besides Talgo coaches, which are also meant for higher speed on the existing tracks, are likely to be hauled with these high speed locomotives.