At 200 Km An Hour And Rs 10 Lakh Crore Cost, Government Plans Bharatmala Of High-Speed Rail Lines To Connect Top Cities

Swarajya Staff

Mar 05, 2018, 12:38 PM | Updated 12:38 PM IST

Indian Railways ready for a major infrastructure upgrade.
Indian Railways ready for a major infrastructure upgrade.

Indian Railways is in final stages of formulating a big bang infrastructure upgrade plan, most likely to be unveiled next month. The government is planning to invest Rs 10 lakh crore on building a network of high-speed railway corridors on which trains could run at a speed of 200 kilometre (km) per hour, and connect major cities in the country, reports Rajat Arora for The Economic Times. According to the report, the total length of routes will span over 10,000 km and the programme is being envisaged on the lines of Bharatmala highways development plan.

The report quotes a top Railway Ministry official as saying that the tracks for high-speed rail "would come up atop the existing or upcoming national highways or on rail land that runs parallel to existing rail routes". Further, the report tells us that the government has decided to build double lines on elevated corridors, standing on single pillars to halve the cost. Additionally, special light-weight coaches will be designed for these tracks.

In recent times, the railways has explored some innovative ways to raise money, be it by monetising land banks available with it, or by commercialising its trains by allowing their outside face to double up as ad space walls. This way of raising money outside of train fares will also be exploited in funding high speed corridors apart from borrowings from financial institutions and multilateral agencies.

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