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In a first, Indian Railways invites private players to operate trains on its network

The railway ministry has decided to attract ₹30,000 crores of private sector investment in which will be the first initiative of private investment for operating passengers trains over the network of the Indian Railways.

In a first, Indian Railways invites private players to operate trains on its network
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The Indian Railways has started the process to get private players on board for running its trains. In a first, the Ministry of Railways invited proposal for private companies to run 151 passenger trains on its network. 

The Ministry of Railways has invited Request for Qualifications (RFQ) for private investors to operate train services over 100 origin-destination routes. The list of routes has been prepared by the Indian Railways. 

The railway ministry has decided to attract ₹30,000 crores of private sector investment in which will be the first initiative of private investment for operating passengers trains over the network of the Indian Railways. 

In a statement, the railways said that much of trains will be manufactured in India as a part of the ‘Make in India’ initiative and the private players will ensure the financing, operations and maintenance of the modern passenger trains. 

“The Minister of Railways has invited RFQ for private participation for operation of passenger train services over 109 Origin Destinations (OD) pairs of route via the introduction of 151 modern trains,” the official statement read. 

The trains should have a minimum of 16 coaches, it added while saying that the objective of inviting private platers was to introduce modern technology and reduce the transit time along with job-creation. They will be allowed to run at a maximum speed of 160 kmph. 

The passengers will be able to board trains operate by private participants by April 2023. VK Yadav, the Railway Board Chairman, was quoted in media reports as saying that this was being done to increase the availability of trains.  

As specified by the railways, the routes on which these private trains will operate include Mumbai-New Delhi. ND to Howrah, Chennai and Patna among others. Moreover, the private trains will have additional paths to operate after 2021 as the dedicated freight corridors will be completed in 2021. 

Of all, 18 Paris of such trains will operate under Mumbai region of the Indian Railways while 13 pairs under Delhi and Prayagraj regions. 

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