|Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his counterpart from Japan Shinzo Abe will lay the foundation for the country’s first high-speed train project — Ahmedabad-Mumbai bullet train — on September 14th in Ahmedabad.|
The 508-km-long project to be built with estimated investment of ₹1,08,000 crore will be funded up to 81% by Japan with soft loan of ₹88,000 crore at interest rate of 0.1% with repayment period 50 years.
“It is for the first time in history in India that an infrastructure project is being funded on such favourable terms,” a release issued by the Gujarat government stated, claiming that the entire project would be funded without putting any strain on existing financial resources of the country.
The release stated that the project testing and commissioning date has been advanced from December 2023 to August 2022.
According to the details of the project, the Mumbai Ahmedabad High Speed Rail will be passing through two States, Maharashtra 155.642 km and Gujarat 350.530 km and one Union Territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli 2 km. The double-track project involves 21 km of tunnel with seven km under sea at Thane Creek in Mumbai.
There will be 12 stations catered to, starting from an underground station in Mumbai, while remaining stations at Thane, Virar, Boisar, Vapi, Bilimora, Surat, Bharuch, Vadodara, Anand, Ahmedabad, and Sabarmati will be elevated.
As part of the project, a dedicated High Speed Rail Training Institute is being developed in Vadodara and will become functional by end of 2020. Around 4,000 staff members will be trained in this institute and they will be responsible for operation and maintenance of the ambitious project, which will usher in the new era of high-speed railways in the country.
The Central government’s flagship Make In India will also get a major boost as the high-speed train project’s implementation begins as most of the components, track systems and even rolling stocks will be manufactured in India with the help of the Japanese government and private-sector companies involved in manufacturing railway components.
“The construction sector in India will also get a big boost not only in terms of investment but also with respect to new technology and work culture. This project is likely to generate employment for about 20,000 workers during the construction phase, who will be trained specialist to take up construction of such projects in India,” the release stated.