Mumbai: Travel time between Mumbai and Delhi is about to take almost five hours less than what it is now. Travel time on the Delhi to Howrah is also expected to be reduced by five and a half hours in a bid to make high speed trains a reality.
This is hoped to be achieved by infusing nearly Rs 14,000 crore into the railways to improve infrastructure, including replacement of tracks, upgrade of signals systems, bridges strengthened, level crossings eliminated and other technical enhancements on the routes over the next four years.
This is a part of the 11-point action plan to modernise train travel.
According to a circular issued by the Railway Board Chairman, V K Yadav, enhancing the track infrastructure on these two extremely busy routes is necessary because they account for nearly 30 per cent of passenger and 20 per cent of total freight traffic on rail network.
Yadav has also instructed officials to initiate immediate action to start implementing the plans drawn up by the board for the restructuring by August 31 and the ministry has also sent proposals to the PMO.
As of now, the fastest train on the 1483 kilometre Delhi-Mumbai route takes fifteen and a half hours for one trip, while the 1525 kilometre Delhi-Howrah route takes seventeen hours. The objective is to bring down travel time by increasing the speed from 130 kmph to 160 kmph.
The new systems will also enhance line capacity by 46-48 per cent, improve punctuality and provide technological aid to avert accidents....