Indian Railways to invest ₹7 Trillion to upgrade Track Infrastructure in next 10 years

Anushka Khare Posted on: 2023-12-26 06:05:00 Viewer: 8,904 Comments: 0 Country: India City: New Delhi

Indian Railways to invest ₹7 Trillion to upgrade Track Infrastructure in next 10 years

New Delhi, India (Urban Transport News):  In a transformative move, the Indian Railways is gearing up for a massive investment of ₹7 trillion over the next decade. This substantial investment aims to lay an unprecedented 50,000 kilometers of new train tracks, a crucial step towards modernizing the railway network and enhancing train speeds.

Vision 2047: A Blueprint for Connectivity and Speed

Encouraged by remarkable progress in recent years, the Railways is embarking on a mission to bolster connectivity with modern tracks capable of accommodating high-speed trains, such as the Vande Bharat. This ambitious initiative is outlined in the upcoming Vision 2047 document, reflecting the national transporter's commitment to extensive growth and modernization.

“Railways has successfully added a record 5,200 km of new tracks in 2022-23 and expects the same this year. The target is to maintain this pace for the next 10 years while also focusing on the replacement of old worn-out tracks to present a strong railway infrastructure capable of handling modern high-speed transportation systems," said a Railway official.

Record-Breaking Achievements and Future Targets

The Railways has set an ambitious target of adding a record-breaking 5,200 kilometers of new tracks in the fiscal year 2022-23, with an anticipation to maintain this pace for the next decade. The focus extends beyond just laying new tracks; the plan involves the replacement of old, worn-out tracks, and fortifying the railway infrastructure to support cutting-edge high-speed transportation systems.

Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw emphasized the significance of laying new tracks, positioning it as a key focus area to bring modern railway infrastructure to every corner of India. The upcoming budget for the next fiscal year is expected to allocate ₹50,000 crore for laying 5,000-5,500 kilometers of new tracks, a remarkable increase of over 50% from the previous fiscal year's budget estimate.

Funding and Strategic Approach

At the current cost, laying 1 kilometer of track requires approximately ₹15 crore, considering factors like steel prices and land availability. The Railways assure that all new lines will meet the stringent requirements of high-speed and semi-high-speed trains, such as the Vande Bharat, capable of reaching speeds up to 180 kmph.

To support its extensive infrastructure plans, the Railways expects the Centre to maintain the level of gross budgetary support (GBS). In the fiscal year 2023-24, the Centre provided a record GBS of ₹2,40,200 crore, reflecting a substantial 51% increase from the revised estimates of ₹1,59,300 crore in 2022-23.

Projected Growth and Network Expansion

The Railways' strategic focus on expanding its network aligns with the projected growth in train traffic, encompassing both passengers and freight. A railway ministry study indicates that over 8 billion people travel by train annually, a number projected to skyrocket to 80 billion by 2030, necessitating a significant increase in capacity.

Conclusion

The Indian Railways' monumental investment of ₹7 trillion and the ambitious track expansion plan underscore its commitment to modernization and improved connectivity. The Vision 2047 initiative, coupled with substantial budgetary allocations, sets the stage for a transformative decade in India's railway landscape, with enhanced speeds and widespread connectivity on the horizon.





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