Home / News / India /  Budget may announce up to 400 Vande Bharat trains
Back

Budget may announce up to 400 Vande Bharat trains

The Vande Bharat trains will take up the speed to over 180 kmph on all major routes from a maximum of 160 kmph at present along limited routes. (Mint)Premium
The Vande Bharat trains will take up the speed to over 180 kmph on all major routes from a maximum of 160 kmph at present along limited routes. (Mint)

The government is planning to fast-track the roll-out of semi-high-speed, next- generation Vande Bharat trains, and is likely to announce 300-400 new trains in the union budget proposals for FY24, railway ministry officials aware of the development said

The government is planning to fast-track the roll-out of semi-high-speed, next- generation Vande Bharat trains, and is likely to announce 300-400 new trains in the union budget proposals for FY24, railway ministry officials aware of the development said.

The officials also said the budget may further raise the gross budgetary support for the national transporter from 1.37 trillion earmarked in the budget for FY23, taking government support to railways to its highest-ever level. The support in the current fiscal year’s budget was up by 28% from 1.07 trillion in 2021-22.

The government plans to gradually replace all existing high-speed trains, including the Rajdhanis and Shatabdis, with the Vande Bharat, which will take up the speed to over 180 kmph on all major routes from a maximum of 160 kmph at present along limited routes.

To be sure, around 100 Vande Bharat trains are expected to be produced next fiscal.

But announcing 300-400 will mean production facilities get ready to produce more in subsequent years, the officials said. This will not only help equip these modern trains for longer domestic journeys, but also provide an opportunity for exporting them, they added.

This will bring India at par with eight countries that have the capability to manufacture trains with speeds of 180 kmph or more.

Railway minister Ashwani Vaishnaw said by FY26, India will start exporting Vande Bharat trains and will also have a standard-gauge train, which is widely used globally, in the portfolio.

Mint reported on 8 July about the Railways’ plans to export Vande Bharat trains, with the Rail India Technical and Economic Service Ltd , or Rites, the exports arm of Railways, generating enquiries and visits from a few neighbouring countries, such as Bangladesh, which showed interest in using the technology.

Testing tracks for both broad and standard gauge Vande Bharat trains are being laid near Jodhpur in Rajasthan.

The trains will be tested for maximum speeds of up to 220 kmph. This would provide the ideal testing ground for markets in Europe, Latin America and East Asia that have a big interest in buying state-of-the-art trains at low prices, Vaishnaw said.

The minister added that keeping in mind the requirement of these trains, the Railways production facilities are also being ramped up and new facilities are being prepared to produce these trains.

“We want to showcase the technology to the world by running at least 100 Vande Bharat trains for 10-12 lakh kms over a one-year period. This proves the credibility of the technology and help it compete in the global market," the minister said.

Apart from standard chair-cars, a sleeper version of the train is also proposed for launch in January-March 2024. The Railways is also working on making a ‘tilting version’ of the Vande Bharat that would allow these trains to be introduced in older rail networks having several curves.

For this tilting version, the Railways may soon enter into a technology tie-up with global players such as Spanish Talgo trains, Bombardier and Alstom. It’s own research is also developing the technology.

Railways is also looking to add about 100,000 km of new train tracks over the next 25 years that will also help it raise the average speed of trains on its network.

It is also targeting 3,000 million tonne of cargo movement by 2030 at an annual growth rate of 12%.

Catch all the Business News, Market News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on Live Mint. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.
More Less

Recommended For You

Trending Stocks

×
Get alerts on WhatsApp
Set Preferences My ReadsWatchlistFeedbackRedeem a Gift CardLogout