New Delhi, India (Urban Transport News): The national transporter Indian Railways today opened bids for operation of private trains in three Clusters - Mumbai 2, Delhi 1 and Delhi 2 under the Government of India's Passenger Train Operations project in New Delhi.
According to sources, only two bidders namely Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) and Megha Engineering and Infrastructures Limited (MEIL) have submitted their bids.
"After detailed exercise and multiple rounds of discussion with the industry players, the bids for PPP in the Passenger Train Operations project are opened on 23 July 2021. This is an entirely new attempt to bring world-class trains through Public Private Participation (PPP) in India," said the Ministry of Railways adding that the Ministry has received bids from both private and public sectors to operate 29 pairs of trains with around 40 modern rakes entailing an investment of around Rs 7200 crores. The Ministry of Railways will expeditiously complete the evaluation and decide the bids.
According to the plan, around 30 pairs of trains will be operated in these three clusters by private players and the project will attract an investment of around Rs 7,200 crores. A total of Rs 30,000 crores investment is estimated for running of passenger trains over the rail network for the first time.
The private players would be selected through a transparent two-stage competitive bidding process comprising a request for qualification (RFQ) and a request for proposal (RFP) for the entire Private Train Project in a phased manner.
Assuming high footfall and revenue, most of the firms showed interest in Delhi and Mumbai clusters.
According to the Private Train plan, the private train operations on the Indian Railway network will be commenced by March 2023 initially with 12 trains and by 2027 a total of 151 trains will be launched for such services.
It is estimated that Railway Infrastructure would need an investment of Rs. 50 lakh crores between 2018-2030. To bridge the gap in Capital funding, a Public-Private partnership mode is envisaged to facilitate faster development of the network, manufacturing of rolling stocks, and delivery of passenger and freight services.