New Delhi : The Indian Railways have identified 11 corridors for running the trains at a “semi-high speed” of 160 km per hour by 2019 and sought sanction of Rs 22,000 crore from the finance ministry in the upcoming union budget. The average speed of the high profile trains like Rajdhani is at present 88 to 90 km per hour.
The project envisages improvement of the rail tracks between Mumbai and Delhi, between Mumbai and Goa, Mumbai and Ahmedabad, Delhi-Kolkata, Nagpur-Hyderabad, Nagpur-Bilaspur, Chennai-Hyderabad, Chennai-Bengaluru, Delhi-Chandigarh, Delhi-Kanpur and Delhi-Agra. The Railways have already started a feasibility study to push for high speed on these routes, though not attaining the high-speed rail corridor between Mumbai and Ahmedabad to run the train at 200 km per hour.
The Railway Ministry sources said the first two tracks to be developed for speeding up the trains’ speed are between Delhi and Mumbai and Delhi and Kolkata. It will enable completion of the journey between Delhi and Mumbai in just 11 hours straight. Presently, the Mumbai Rajdhani takes 16 hours to cover a distance of 1400 km at an average speed of 88 km per hour. At present, only the Gatiman Express moves at a speed of 160 km per hour covering the distance of 188 km between Delhi (Nizamuddin) and Agra in one hour 40 minutes.