Private trains: Dilemmas of a prospective operator
Early last year, the Indian Railways (IR) announced an ambitious plan to privatize pairs of 109 origin-destination (O-D) trains, with 5% accounting for about 12% of the existing mail and express trains. The model looked good on paper with IR to gain more revenue without investment, PTO to earn reasonable profits, and passengers to get a better travel experience.
Among the beneficial objectives announced by the Ministry of Railways (MOR) were:
- Induction of modern technology
- 40,000 km / 30 days maintenance reduction
- Reduction in transit time
- Increased Security
- World class travel experience for travelers
- Reducing demand-supply shortage in the passenger transport sector
- To bring in Rs 30,000 crore private investment in the rail sector.
The bidding process began in July 2020. The model proposed a concession period of 35 years with the concessionaire (PTO, passenger train operator). As per the bid criteria, PTOs are required to include their train, access the path, stations, railway infrastructure and charge for power consumption, and share revenue with IR as decided by competitive bidding. Will happen.
The situation will be tight with the contracted PTO to ensure 95% punctuality and there will be no more than one failure per lakh km of travel and commitment for better onboard services like hygiene and catering. It would be necessary to clarify tests and tests to validate rolling stock operations by IR before the introduction of trains brought by PTO. It will provide drivers and guards and use all of its fixed infrastructure except maintenance, which will require facilities built by the PTO.
News Source: ConstructionWorld