India to Get its First Japanese-Modeled Bullet Train by 2022

Henrietta Strickland
September 13, 2017

Most of those who never tire of praising China's infrastructure and its massive rollout, including 22,000 km of a bullet train network, but feel it is too expensive for India will do well to keep in mind China first started planning bullet trains when its income levels were far below what India's are today. Japan has agreed to provide more than 65 per cent of the total cost of over $16 billion to India in the form of easy loans.

The groundbreaking ceremony shall be held in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe. However, Abe has indicated Japan, is expected to sign as many as 10 memorandums of understandings. Past year in December, India and Japan had agreed on a fully elevated bullet train corridor between Mumbai and Ahmedabad.

Drawing a parallel with Maruti cars, Goyal said: "The bullet train project will have the impact on rail technology as Maruti had on the country's automobile sector 30 years ago", he said.

The operating speed of the bullet train will be 320 kilometers per hour and maximum speed will be 350 kilometres per hour. If the bullet train will stop at all 12 stations, then it will cover the distance in two hours and fifty-eight minutes. The bullet train is aimed to connect Ahmedabad and Mumbai at an estimated cost of Rs 1,10,000 crore.On the Ahmedabad-Mumbai route, total 12 stations have been proposed that include Mumbai, Thane, Virar, Boisar, Vapi, Bilimora, Surat, Bharuch, Vadodara, Anand, Ahmedabad, and Sabarmati.

Stating that India kept running railways on technologies that were discarded by other developed countries years ago, Goyal said introduction of bullet trains will revolutionise the country's outdated railway system.

"People are not going to travel if it is priced higher than air travel". Sanjeev Sinha, alumni of the Indian Institute of Technology and a former employee of India's Tata group of companies in Tokyo has been appointed as adviser for the high-speed rail project by Japan Railways.

Of the 508-km stretch, 92 per cent of the route will be elevated; six per cent in the tunnel and the rest two per cent will be on the ground. That is, 508 km stretch will have 468 km of elevated track, 27 km inside tunnel and the remaining 13 km on the ground.

"Repayment of loan is to begin after 15 years of receiving the loan, making it practically free since, this loan interest works out to roughly Rs 7-8 crore per month", said a railway statement. With Indian Railways adopting such technologies, the bullet train was an endeavour to bring economic growth and prosperity in the country.

A High Speed Rail Training Institute is being created at Vadodara, Gujarat, and will be opened by 2020 to train local workers to operate and maintain the high-speed line.

Keeping in view the long-term plan for human resource development, government of Japan has also offered 20 seats per year for a master's course from the universities of Japan for Indian Railway officials.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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