New Delhi, September 12: India is all set to get its first bullet train by 15 August 2022- when India completes its 75 years of Independence. The foundation stone for the first bullet train project, connecting Mumbai and Ahmedabad will be laid by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Thursday i.e. September 14, 2017, in Ahmedabad.  “The commencement of work on the country’s first High-Speed Rail (Bullet train) project will begin on September 14 in Ahmedabad,” Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal told reporters on Monday.

On Tuesday, Sanjeev Sinha, former Tata executive working in Tokyo was appointed as the advisor for India’s Bullet Train project. The bullet train is aimed to connect Ahmedabad and Mumbai at an estimated cost of Rs 1,10,000 crore.On the Ahmedabad-Mumbai route, total 12 stations have been proposed that include Mumbai, Thane, Virar, Boisar, Vapi, Bilimora, Surat, Bharuch, Vadodara, Anand, Ahmedabad, and Sabarmati.

Interesting facts about Ahmedabad-Mumbai Bullet Train Project:

  1. The long-awaited Bullet Train project will start from Ahmedabad and will cover 508 kilometers via Sabarmati, Surat, and Vadodara to reach Mumbai. The 508 kms include Maharashtra(156 KMs), Gujarat(351 KMs) and UT of Dadra and Nagar Haveli (2 KMs).
  2. The high-speed train will also pass through the country’s biggest tunnel of 21 km, of which seven km will be under the sea (Thane Creek)
  3. The 508-km Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail Project will entail an estimated cost of Rs 1,10,000 crore.
  4. Out of the Rs 1,10,000 crore, Japan is giving a loan of Rs 88,000 crore and the interest on this loan is minimal, i.e. 0.1 per cent. This loan is to be repaid to Japan in 50 years. Loan repayment period of 50 years with 15 years grace.”
  5. The operating speed of the bullet train will be 320 kilometers per hour and maximum speed will be 350 kilometers per hour. If the bullet train will stop at all 12 stations, then it will cover the distance in two hours and fifty-eight minutes.
  6. The bullet train will cover the distance of 508 km in two hours and seven minutes if it stops at four stations namely Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Surat, and Mumbai. In a day, the high-speed train will make 70 Ahmedabad-Mumbai sorties.
  7. A total of 24 high-speed trains will be imported from Japan and the rest of the rakes will be manufactured in India
  8. About 825 hectares of land would be acquired for the high-speed rail. The 750-seat train is scheduled to run from August 2022.
  9. Of the 508-km stretch, 92 per cent of the route will be elevated; six per cent in the tunnel and the rest two per cent will be on the ground.
  10. The 508 km stretch will have 468 km of elevated track, 27 km inside the tunnel and the remaining 13 km on the ground.

The new Ahmedabad-Mumbai bullet train project is being developed by a consortium of 6 Japanese companies under the aegis of Japan Railways Group. The funding for this project comes as the part of a low-interest loan extended to India by Japan. An interest rate of 0.1% over a 50-year term and repayment moratorium for the first 15 years, the funding from Japan for the High-Speed Rail, called Shinkansen in Japan, is almost like a grant based on standard financial valuation calculations.

With the Indian Railways adopting most modern technologies, the bullet train was an endeavor to bring economic growth and prosperity in the country, he said. Piyush Goyal said that the high-speed rail was envisioned by PM Modi to take Indian Railways towards most modern technologies like developed countries. With the Indian Railways adopting most modern technologies, the bullet train was an endeavor to bring economic growth and prosperity in the country.

Moreover, Goyal said that this move will open 20,000 construction jobs. He further added that a dedicated High-Speed Rail Training Institute is being developed at Vadodara which will be functional by the end of 2020. The facilities at this institute will be utilized to train about 4,000 staff in next three years, who will then be utilized for operation and maintenance ensuring that this work is through skilled people in India rather than foreign dependent.  In addition, 300 young officials of Indian Railways are being trained in Japan to give them exposure in high-Speed Track Technology.