The Managing Director of NHSRCL (National High Speed Rail Corporation Limited), Achal Khare said that tenders worth Rs 50,000 crore for civil works related to the project of bullet train would be opened by November 2019. This ambitious project connecting Mumbai and Ahmedabad is likely to be completed by 2023. The total length of the proposed High Speed Railway Corridor will be 508.17 km and about 45% of the total land required has been acquired for the project. The train will pass through two states, Gujarat and Maharashtra and one Union Territory, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and the proposed corridor will be lying in Western Railways’ zone.
The High Speed Railway Corridor, along with state of the art technology, will encompass a 21 km long undersea tunnel. Khare also said that the 508-km-long project approximately requires Rs 1.08 lakh crore of investment, however, the exact cost can only be known after the tender process for the bullet train is complete. Also, out of the required 1,380 hectares of the area, only 622 hectares have been acquired so far. As the project would be covering 12 stations in two different states, massive civil work will be required for the project. But before the civil work begins, it is necessary to take up the task of shifting utilities, said Khare.
In the recent maneuver of shifting utilities, three ONGC wells have been capped by NHSRCL as it fell in the way of the corridor. This comes as at least five oil wells of ONGC have come in alignment with NHSRCL’s project in Sabarmati near Ahmedabad railway station. While these wells will now have to be shifted by ONGC, the NHSRCL has reimbursed the capital required to do so. Adding to the list at least 1,600 electrical utilities of Gujarat Energy Transmission Company (GETCO), Maharashtra State Electricity Transmission Company Limited (MSETCL), Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL), Uttar Gujarat Vij Company, Madhya Gujarat Vij Company, and Dakshin Gujarat Vij Company must be shifted.
Khare said that about 50% of the work involving the shifting of utilities has been completed. About 15 villages out of 198 have problems with relocating in Gujarat. However, land acquisition in Maharashtra is slower than Gujarat. Khare said approximately Rs 17,000 crores has been allotted for spending on land acquisition, out of which Rs 1,800 crores have been used. Out of the total 24 trains, 18 would be imported from Japan and six would be built in India with the help of Indian companies. The corridor is likely to start from Bandra Kurla Complex in Mumbai and will end near Sabarmati Railway Station in Ahmedabad. Also, the end-to-end one-way fare for the bullet train would be around Rs 3,000, said Khare.