Indian Railways awarded a contract for manufacturing and maintenance of 1,200 electric locomotives of 9000 horsepower to Siemens on 21 December.
The mega project is worth Rs 30,000 crore.
The tenders for the ‘Make in India’ loco project were floated in April inviting major rolling stock players to participate in the mega initiative of Indian Railways for which Prime Minister Narendra Modi had laid the foundation stone.
The railways awarded the contract after evaluating the financial bids and other details for the Dahod project.
The financial bid was opened on 6 December and Siemens, the German rolling stock giant, emerged as the lowest bidder with a quotation of Rs 10.98 crore per locomotive, and with this edged past the French major Alstom in the bidding race for the Rs 30,000 crore project which include maintenance for 35 years at Dahod in Gujarat.
Induction of 9000 HP loco in the railways fleet is expected to boost the freight operation. Dahod is the main railway station on Delhi-Mumbai route.
According to the financial bidding documents, Alstom which is already making 12,000 HP locos at Madhepura in Bihar, had quoted the price at 19.46 crore.
It is Indian Railways' first locomotive production unit in Gujarat and the project is expected to provide employment to thousands of people in the area.
Besides manufacturing of 1,200 locos at Dahod facility, the company would be responsible for maintenance for 35 years.
These locomotives will play a vital role in revolutionising the freight movement in the country and help to decongest the saturated tracks by improving the average speed and loading capacity of freight trains, the railways maintain.
The locomotive with 9000 HP capacity will be having a haulage capacity of 4,500 tonnes of load while the maximum speed of these locomotives will be up to 120 km per hour.
The 9000 HP locomotives will be equipped with an automatic train protection system ‘Kavach’.
The railways expects that the first locomotive will be delivered from the factory in early 2024. The locomotive will be manufactured with the use of green energy and will have a green manufacturing tag.
The Dahod workshop, established in 1926 for periodic overhaul of steam locomotives, is being upgraded to electric locomotive manufacturing unit with infrastructural improvements. It is expected to provide direct and indirect employment to over 10,000 people.
The 1,200 locomotives will be manufactured at Dahod facility in 11 years from 2023-24 to 2033-34. The successful bidder will supply five locomotives in the first year and 35 in the second year. As many as 80 locomotives will be supplied per annum in the third and fourth years.
The production will be increased to 100 locomotives per annum in the fifth and the sixth year. Thereafter, 160 locomotives will be manufactured per annum for five years till 2033-34.
The nominated government depots for maintenance with holding capacity of 300 each will be at Kharagpur (West Bengal), Visakhapatnam (Andhra Pradesh), Raipur (Chhattisgarh) and Pune (Maharashtrra).
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