With the process of starting privately operated trains moving forward, the Railway Board has asked concerned zones to identify locations for setting up of maintenance infrastructure for these trains.
The private train operators, to be selected after a bidding process, will have to set up their own maintenance infrastructure at the allotted location.
12 clusters, essentially urban hubs where trains will operate out of, have already been identified by the Railway Ministry and NITI Aayog. These, and the list of proposed train origin, destination and arrival/departure slots, are also part of the RFQ document published by the Ministry earlier this month.
In all, 109 routes are to be served by over 151 rakes to be procured and maintained by private operators.
Indian Railways to provide land, connectivity for private train operator’s depot
Indian Railways has the option of providing a vacant or ‘green-field’ plot of land to set up maintenance depot or alternatively provide space in existing maintenance facilities. The private operator can upgrade existing infra as per their own needs.
IR also has to make rail and road connectivity available to these depots in case they have to be constructed from the ground up.
The Board has also asked zones to create slots for washing of the private operators’ rolling stock on existing washing line facilities. For example, trains from both Mumbai clusters could be washed at places like Kalaburagi, Mumbai, Surat, or other locations.
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