Faster Indian Railways trains soon! Piyush Goyal-led Indian Railways aims to upgrade all four arms of the Golden Quadrilateral and its diagonals to allow for faster movement of passenger trains. According to VK Yadav, Chairman Railway Board, by the end of this ongoing financial year, all the six major routes will be upgraded to speed potential of 130 kilometres per hour. “We are working to ensure that by the end of this FY, Golden Quadrilateral and its diagonals will be able to take passenger trains with speeds of up to 130 kmph,” Yadav said while addressing an online press briefing. The Golden Quadrilateral and its diagonals account for a lion’s share of Indian Railways’ passenger train traffic.
The Golden Quadrilateral and its diagonals are:
Indian Railways is also working on the over Rs 13,000 crore project to upgrade the Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi-Howrah railway routes to allow for passenger trains to hit 160 kmph. The two projects will be completed by end of 2023. With passenger trains travelling at 160 kmph, Indian Railways aims to reduce the travel time between Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi-Howrah to just 12 hours. The Delhi-Mumbai route upgradation, including Vadodara-Ahmedabad stretch, would require an investment of Rs 6,806 crore. On the other hand, the Delhi-Howrah project, including the Kanpur-Lucknow stretch, would involve an investment of Rs 6,685 crore, according to Indian Railways. The mega infrastructure projects were approved by PM Narendra Modi-led Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs last year.
Indian Railways is not only manufacturing LHB coaches that are fit for 160 kmph speeds but its latest ‘Make in India’ Vande Bharat Express can attain speeds of 180 kmph as well! While plans to manufacture more Vande Bharat Express type train sets are being executed by Indian Railways, the national transporter has also set the ball rolling for the private sector to run trains on the network. The first private train is expected to hit Indian Railways tracks by April 2023.