NEW DELHI :
The railways has asked its different zones to identify potentially-viable and operationally-feasible routes for the introduction of privately-operated passenger trains.
In a letter dated September 23, the Railway Board has given an indicative list to all the zones, enumerating 24 routes that have the potential of being operated by private players.
The indicative list identified by the Railway Board for private train operation includes intercity, long-distance and suburban routes.
The railways has asked the zones to identify the routes by Friday, when a meeting will be held with the Member Traffic on the issue.
In the note, the Railway Board has said that private operators would be identified through a participative bid process to run private passenger day/overnight trains that would connect important cities.
On Monday, the railways notified that the Delhi-Lucknow Tejas Express will be operational from October 5. This is the first train that will be fully run by the railways' subsidiary, IRCTC (Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation), and is the national transporter's first step towards privatising operations of some trains.