Friday, 27 January 2017

Mumbai-Nashik-Nagpur fast train corridor likely


27 January 2017

PUNE: Three cities from the state are expected to undergo a rail network revamp as part of the Union government's plan to start fast train corridors.

Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis said the Centre was ready to consider the development of the Mumbai-Nashik-Nagpur fast-train corridor. In reply to a text message sent by TOI on the possibility of the Union government's ambitious bullet train project including Pune and Nashik, the CM said, "Not as yet. But the Union government is ready to consider Mumbai-Nashik-Nagpur fast corridor in lieu of that."

Earlier, the government had agreed to the state's request to extend the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train project to Pune and Nashik. Sources told that it was a possibility even now.

"It has not been refused by the CM. He has said it has not yet been approved so it can mean that a request may have gone to the Union government and is waiting for approval. However, that the Centre is considering the fast rail corridor is good news for the state. The cities are expected to see several infrastructural developments. If the fast corridor is to be developed between the three cities, setting up of new tracks and land acquisition will be needed," a Railways official requesting anonymity told.

The Rs 98,000 crore Ahmedabad-Mumbai bullet train project may go operational by 2023. The corridor is expected to have 10 stations and Japanese International Cooperation Agency that had conducted studies recently said the fares will be among the cheapest in the world. The maximum design speed of this train is 350 kmph and the journey would take 2 hours 58 minutes.

The Railways ministry recently said they were considering new corridors that could be converted into high speed with trains travelling at 250 kmph. The corridors include Delhi-Mumbai, Mumbai-Chennai, Delhi-Kolkata and Delhi-Nagpur.

"Once the Union government approves the route, work will begin. On Tuesday, the state government provided a seed funding of Rs 500 crore to Maharashtra Railway Infrastructure Development Company to facilitate new and existing rail projects in the state. The company will also look into land acquisition, rehabilitation and compensation," another Railways official said.

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