Mumbai: There is a lot of enthusiasm among the people about the country’s first bullet train project. The cost of the train, its design, its fare are all closely watched by the passengers. Now a new update has come out. The 508-km Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail project, popularly known as the ‘Bullet Train’ project is going on at a good pace, said Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw after an onsite review last week. Earlier in June, Vaishnaw announced that the country’s first bullet train will be operational by the year 2026.
— Ashwini Vaishnaw (@AshwiniVaishnaw) July 30, 2022
The estimated cost of the country’s first bullet train project has increased. According to the survey conducted in the year 2015, about Rs 1.08 lakh crore was estimated to be spent in running the first bullet train on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad route. This estimated cost has increased to Rs 1.60 lakh crore. However, Goods and Service Tax (GST) has not been included in this.
The Railway Minister said that after the formation of the new government in Maharashtra, he has got its permission immediately. Now the day is not far, when India’s dream of bullet train will be fulfilled. He said, “I will request you, go and see… about 75 percent of the pillars have been done. The work of construction of stations is going on. The work of building a bridge over the rivers is going on. The work has accelerated soon after the new government came to power in Maharashtra.”
Ashwini Vaishnav said that the railway stations are clean today. There have been many changes in the railways in the last 8 years. The work of making about 46 stations of world class has been started. The work of 75 Vande Bharat trains is in the final stage.
National High-Speed Rail Corporation Limited (NHSRCL) and said that the revised cost can be arrived at only “after the award of all the contracts and completion of land acquisition”. The price increase is a given due to increased expenditure on land acquisition, rise in prices of cement, steel, and other raw materials, it added.
As per reports, official data shows that till now 100% land has been acquired only in Dadra and Nagar Haveli. While in Gujarat the land acquisition is around 98.9%, it’s barely 73% in Maharashtra. The Centre has been maintaining that delay in land acquisition in Maharashtra is the major contributor to the delay in the project.
The ambitious 508 km-long Ahmedabad-Mumbai High-Speed Rail Project was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his former Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe on September 14, 2017 and had an initial deadline of 2022 end for its full operation.