The Narendra Modi government, on Wednesday, invited Request for Qualifications (RFQ) for private companies to operate 151 passenger trains on 109 Origin-Destination (OD) pairs of routes. The project would entail private sector investment of about Rs 30,000 crore and is the “first initiative of private investment for running passenger trains over Indian Railways network”.
“This is the first initiative of private investment for running passenger trains over Indian Railways network,” The Railways Ministry said in a statement.
The objective of the initiative is to introduce modern technology rolling stock with reduced maintenance, reduced transit time, boost job creation, provide enhanced safety, provide world-class travel experience to passengers, the Railway Ministry said.
The 109 (origin-destination) pairs of trains have been formed into 12 clusters across the Indian Railway network. Each train shall have a minimum of 16 coaches. Most of the trains will be manufactured under the Make in India initiative, the Railway Ministry said. The Ministry of Railways in a press release said that private operators can run the trains for 35 years.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Thursday lashed out at the Centre for its invitation to private firms to manufacture and run passenger trains.
“Rail is the only lifeline of the poor and the government is taking it away from them. Snatch whatever you want to. But remember, the people of the country will give a befitting reply,” Rahul Gandhi said in a tweet in Hindi, attaching a news report.
रेल ग़रीबों की एकमात्र जीवनरेखा है और सरकार उनसे ये भी छीन रही है।
जो छीनना है, छीनिये। लेकिन याद रहे- देश की जनता इसका करारा जवाब देगी।https://t.co/M6OQZ6xAz5
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) July 2, 2020
Apart from Rahul Gandhi, CPI(M), CPI and CPI(M)-backed CITU on Thursday took umbrage at the Narendra Modi government’s decision to initiate private investment in Railways, saying it will lead to “self-subservience and not self-reliance” and a move that will eat up jobs. While demanding the recall of the decision, the three outfits also found fault with the timing of the decision that came at a time when the country and the people are in the midst of a serious effort to combat the surging” Covid-19 pandemic. займ на карту екапустазайм за 5 минзайм в биробиджане взять займ безработномузайм с 16 летбыстрый займ чебоксары