Delhi: Thumbs-up to high-speed bullet trains



New Delhi: The Planning Commission has given its thumbs-up for setting up of High Speed Rail Authority of India (HSRA) for running bullet trains in the country which it said will be part of the 12th Five Year Plan beginning this April.

"Definitely, there have to be different authorities for that (implementing bullet train projects," Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia told PTI when asked whether there is need for separate HSRA.

Railways has identified six corridors for running bullet trains at a maximum speed of 350 KM per hour. It has also decided to constitute a separate authority for implementation of the project.

Railway have sought comments from the Planning Commission, Finance Ministry, Urban Development Ministry and Environment Ministry on its proposal to bring a bill to set up the authority.

Responding to the need for setting up of HSRA for the project, Ahluwalia said "I think you cannot do high speed trains with the same system."

"The real question is in what time horizon, we can do it," he said adding it will be part of the 12th Plan which will terminate in March 2017.

The six such projects are: Amritsar-Chandigarh-Delhi (450), Delhi-Agra-Lucknow-Varanasi-Patna (991 km), Pune-Mumbai-Ahmedabad (650 km), Hyderabad-Vijaywada-Chennai (664km), Chennai-Bangalore-Ernakulam (649), Howrah-Haldia (135 km).

Railways have initiated pre-feasibility study of these routes.

PTI