PM Modi dedicates to nation Konkan Railway electrified network

The total cost of the electrification of a total 740 km route of Konkan railway is Rs 1287 crore.

Kamal MishraUpdated: Tuesday, June 21, 2022, 12:30 AM IST
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PM Modi dedicates to nation Konkan Railway electrified network | ANI Photo

Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the 100% Electrification of the Konkan Railway route via video conference Monday at Bengaluru, Karnataka under the ‘Mission 100% Electrification - Moving towards net Zero Carbon Emission’ and flagged off Electric loco trains from Ratnagiri, Madgaon and Udupi. The total cost of the electrification of a total 740 km route of Konkan railway is Rs 1287 crore.

Railway Electrification of Konkan Railway has been completed in 5 phases i.e Thokur-Bijoor, Bijoor-Karwar, Karwar-Thivim, Thivim-Ratnagiri and Ratnagiri-Roha, the last section being Ratnagiri - Thivim which was commissioned on March 28th 2022. All loco pilots have been trained in a phased manner for running electric traction loco.

Now, Konkan Railway is 100% electrified. This will lead to higher operational efficiency and lower unit cost of transportation, thus benefiting the country as well as the Corporation.

It is worthwhile to note the numerous inherent benefits of electric traction i.e. Significant savings in fuel expenditure i.e more than Rs 150 Cr. per annum, Seamless operation on Electric Traction, pollution-free mode of transportation and Reduced dependence on HSD oil. Pollution-free travel for the passengers especially when the train passes through the tunnels. Electrification of the KRCL route will also improve the average speed and throughput of the section and will help in line capacity augmentation/utilization.

"Currently approximately 25 pairs of passengers trains on average 15 goods trains are running/ passing via Konkan Railway route. Out this operation of all goods trains and two pairs of passenger trains already shifted on the electric loco, rest passenger train operation will be shifted on electric loco soon in phase manner" said an officer of Konkan Railway.

Konkan Railway passes through the dense forest cover of Sahyadri hills along the Western Coastal Strip. This region is endowed with rich natural beauty. Electrification of the Konkan Railway route will not only prove to be a major step in conserving the rich natural heritage, flora and fauna of the region but also help in its economic development.

Konkan Railway was formed in 1990 as a Company to construct a Rail Link between Mumbai (Roha) to Mangaluru (Thokur). On 1st May 1998, Konkan Railway was dedicated to the Nation by the then Hon'ble Prime Minister, Late. Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee and the first train on the completed track were flagged off on January 26, 1998.

Since the alignment passes through geographically difficult terrain, there are a number of major bridges, deep cuttings and long tunnels on the route of KR. There are 91 tunnels on the route and the total length of the route in the tunnelled section is 84.496 Km (about 11% of the total route length). A forced ventilation system has been provided in seven major long tunnels.

The transportation of heavy material to the work site was more difficult in the absence of motorable approaches at many work locations. Execution of Railway Electrification work was a big challenge, particularly during monsoon when flash floods and landslides/soil slip affected the work adversely in the deep and long cuttings. Out of 350 cuttings, 66 cuttings are critical and vulnerable. Unlike other railways, foundation casting material had to be transported on the rail which required operation blocks. This made the work even more complicated.

"Konkan Railway has been a Dream come true for the people of the Konkan Region along the West Coast of the Country. It connects the people of this region to Mumbai the commercial capital of the Nation thus improving the economic opportunities for them" said an official.

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