India’s first bullet train between Mumbai and Ahmedabad will run at a frequency of 20 minutes, Achal Khare, Managing Director, National High Speed Railway Corporation Limited (NGRCL) has said. Indian Railways ambitious bullet train project is being undertaken under the ‘Make in India’ initiative.
According to the report, Khare has said that from Mumbai’s Bandra Kurla Complex, first bullet train will depart every 20 minutes. During peak hours, the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet-train service will run thrice an hour, while during non-peak hours, the bullet train service will run twice. The foundation stone for the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet-train project was jointly led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe, last year in September. It is expected that the construction of the bullet-train project will be over by year 2022 and the train is likely to commence its service on August 15, 2022.
According to Khare, NHSRCL 24 bullet train rakes of E-5 series running on Shinkansen technology will be used for the network. In order to ensure there is free flow of services, 20 trains will be functional while the rest will be kept for emergencies. The bullet-train will comprise of many modern facilities. Initially, the bullet train will have 10 coaches, which will have seating capacity of 750 passengers. However, the number of coaches will be increased to 15 by 2033, which will have seating capacity of 1,250 passengers. Apart from comfortable seats, the bullet-train will have other features like vaccum toilets, multi- purpose room, baby toilet seats etc.
With a speed of 320 kmph, the bullet train will complete a journey between Mumbai and Ahmedabad in around 2 hours. At present, it takes around 7 hours to complete a rail journey between the two cities. En route, the bullet train will cover 12 railway stations namely, Bandra Kurla Complex, Thane, Virar, Boisar, Vapi, Bilimora, Surat, Bharuch, Baroda, Anand, Sabarmati and Ahmedabad stations.
Recently, Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis told the Legislative Council that fares of the bullet train would be comparable to existing conventional railway fares, in response to Congress’ Sanjay Dutt’s demand for a cost benefit analysis, claiming that 67 per cent of the bullet train’s route would be in Gujarat yet the financial share of Maharashtra was equal to that of Gujarat.
Khare said that with the implementation of bullet-train in the country, a lot of traffic from the roads is expected to shift to high-speed trains. He said that in order to run the bullet-train, a training institute will be set up in December 2020, where around 4,000 people will be given formal training before commissioning of the bullet train project.