New Delhi, July 9: Indian Railways is trying to take a loan to raise Rs 2,500 crore to install CCTVs at all stations and coaches across the country, for maintaining state-of-the-art surveillance systems in its rail system. The Railways is trying to explore the loan route as it is unable to get further allocations from the Finance Ministry under the Nirbhaya Fund. Also Read - Another Record! Indian Railways Runs Its Longest Ever 2.8 km Long 'SheshNaag', Twitter is Impressed
Out of the total requirement of Rs 3,000 crore for the CCTV project, the Finance Ministry has allocated Rs 500 crore. However, the rest of the amount will be raised through Indian Railways Finance Corporation (IRFC), the finance arm of the national transporter. Also Read - IRCTC Latest News: Private Train Services Likely by April 2023, All Coaches to be Procured Under ‘Make in India’ Policy
“While 436 stations are being equipped with CCTVs, 547 more stations would be covered under the Nirbhaya Fund this year,” a senior Railway Ministry official told IANS. Also Read - Indian Railways Invites Bid For Pvt Players in Passenger Train Operation | Objective to Introduce Modern Technology, Reduce Travel Time
Giving top priority to safety and security at rail premises, the Budget for 2018-19 had approved CCTV systems in 58,276 coaches and 5,121 stations in the Indian rail network. However, the Railways could not get the Finance Ministry’s nod for further allocation under the Nirbhaya Fund and was told to raise resources on its own.
So it has been decided to raise Rs 2,500 crore through IRFC, with Railtel repaying the loan. Railtel, the telecom wing of the Railways, is responsible for executing the CCTV projects. Raising loan through IRFC will be preferable for the Railways as against taking a market loan.
According to a revised plan, 42,000 coaches and about 5,000 stations would be equipped with CCTV system to strengthen safety and security of passengers. “We will begin with AC coaches and subsequently other coaches would also be covered,” said the official. “While each coach will have eight CCTV cameras covering the entry gates, aisle and vestibules, all crucial points at stations will have the systems.”
Railways have identified 10,349 coaches of suburban trains, 4,038 coaches of premier trains like Rajdhani and Shatabdi, and about 27,000 coaches of superfast and express trains to be covered under the CCTV surveillance system. All mail, express and premier trains, as well as local passenger services, will be equipped with the modern surveillance systems in the next two years as per the plan.
(With inputs from IANS)