Pvt Operators To Get Hourly Pay To Run Suburban Trains | Bengaluru News – Times of India

BENGALURU: To reduce the high upfront system procurement cost, Karnataka Rail Infrastructure Development Company Ltd (K-RIDE), which is implementing the suburban rail project, is planning to lease rolling stock from private firms instead of purchasing it.
On May 4, K-RIDE organised a stakeholders’ conference in the city for rolling stock procurement on PPP basis. K-RIDE officials said 18 financial institutions/banks as well as 12 rolling stock manufacturers, including Alstom, Hyundai Rotem, Siemens, Hitachi Rail Ltd and Bombardier, participated.
“This is the first time rolling stock is being inducted under PPP basis on a large scale and for long term. Several manufacturers have shown interest, so we asked them to directly participate in the tender. But some want to tie up or form JVs with financial institutions to participate in the tender,” said K-RIDE managing director Amit Garg.
K-RIDE is planning to induct 300 coaches (50 six-coach trains) for the 148km suburban rail network (four corridors). Sources said the project cost fell from Rs 18,621 crore to Rs 15,767 crore due to PPP model for rolling stock.
Garg said the selected firm will have to operate and maintain rolling stock for 30-35 years. “It will also have to deploy loco-pilot for each of the 50 trains. We will pay the firm on the basis of hourly running of train sets for passenger operations,” he said, adding: “It will take at least three years for rolling stock manufacturers to supply these coaches, so we need to start the process now and complete it without delay.”
K-RIDE officials said they will soon invite expression of interest/ request for quotation from firms by June-end. Following this, shortlisted firms will be asked to participate in the request for proposal (RFP) which involves technical and financial bids.
K-RIDE plans to operate six-coach trains for 19 hours a day (5am to midnight). The operational speed will be 32kmph. It will deploy additional trains based on demand, especially during peak hours. The total number of coaches required for the four suburban rail corridors is likely to be 342 in 2025, 396 in 2031, and 564 in 2041.
Metro operators in Delhi and Chennai had also explored leasing options of rolling stock but that is yet to take off. In 2008, the railway ministry launched ‘wagon leasing scheme’ to lease rail wagons, mainly freight, like aircraft but it evoked poor response due to stringent conditions.

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Sagar Biswas

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