'Vande Bharat Manufacturing On Fast Track', Says Railways Minister Vaishnaw After Visiting Integral Coach Factory In Chennai
Union Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw on Friday (20 May) visited the Integral Coach Factory (ICF) in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, and reviewed the progress of the Vande Bharat trains being manufactured at the facility.
"Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw visited the Integral Coach Factory in Chennai and reviewed the production of Vande Bharat Trains," Ministry of Railways said in a tweet in Hindi.
During his visit, Vaishnaw also met with the factory workers and motivated them.
In a tweet on Friday, Vaishnaw said that the manufacturing of the Vande Bharat trains is on fast-track mode at the ICF Chennai.
Introduced in 2019, the Vande Bharat semi-high speed trains, originally called Train 18, are currently running on Delhi-Varanasi and Delhi-Katra routes.
In her Budget speech, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced that 400 Vande Bharat trains will be manufactured in the next three years.
This also comes with a plan, announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, to run 75 Vande Bharat trains across India by Independence Day in 2023.
The original plan was to start rolling out these trains from May this year. The first one was scheduled to undergo testing and trials in May and the second in June.
From August-September, five to seven trainsets will be produced per month in three production units: ICF Chennai, MCF Rae Bareli, and RCF Kapurthala, according to the plan.
Officials said that the railways is set to meet the target set by the prime minister with orders for wheels which were given to a company based in Ukraine company being routed to other companies. These wheels will land in India soon, they said.
'Work is going on simultaneously at different production units and since the other parts are already here, there should not be any further delays. In fact, we think we will achieve the target well before August 15 next year,' an official said.
It should be noted that amid the supply issues from Ukraine, the Indian Railways has decided to manufacture the wheels at Yelahanka in Bangalore.
The Indian Railways will begin manufacturing the wheels at the Railway Wheel Factory (RWF) in Yelahanka, which has already floated tenders for the parts required to start manufacturing.
It is expected to complete the production in the next two-three months, officials aware of the matter were quoted in an Indian Express report as saying.
The factory has been manufacturing axles for these wheels, even the imported ones.
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