In a bid to ease the introduction of private passenger trains, the Ministry of Railways has already received bids worth Rs 7,200 crore from both private as well as public sector to operate passenger trains. “Bids for PPP in passenger train operations project opened today. Bids from private and public sectors to operate 29 pairs of trains with around 40 modern rakes entailing an investment of around Rs 7,200 crore have been received,” a release from the Railway Ministry said.
The ministry added that they will complete the evaluation and then make a decision on the bids received. The bids for PPP in passenger trains were opened today after several rounds of detailed discussion with the industry players.
It needs to be mentioned here that the entire process is completely new in the Indian context and this will need extensive debates and deliberations in order to bring world-class trains through Public Private Participation (PPP).
The Ministry has already had meetings and discussions with 23 companies on private rail projects. The Railway Board has also held meetings with both domestic and foreign companies.
If the Railway Ministry sources are to be believed, the meeting was a pre-application meeting. This is where the ministry explained how the private policy could actually work. Among the 23 companies that have shown interest are foreign companies like Bombardier and Alstom.
Apart from them, there are a number of companies that include BHEL, BEML, IRCTC, CAF, Medha, JKB Infrastructure, Bharat Forge, Starlight.
Titagarh Wagon of West Bengal was present at the meeting on private railways. Titagarh Wagon has experience in making various types of railway coaches and pitching in with extremely modern coaches.
All these private trains will run across a total of 12 clusters in the country. Howrah will be one of these clusters and private trains will run on a total of 6 routes in this cluster.
These trains will run at 160 km per hour, but the passengers will not feel any kind of shock and no sound will reach inside the cabin. There will also be sliding doors on every coach and they will open from both inside and outside.