Friday, January 20, 2012

Trivandrum-Kasargod High-Speed Rail Corridor

The Central government Thursday decided to give aid to the Kasargod-Thiruvananthapuram high speed railway track. The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation has been asked to prepare a detailed project report on it.

The authorities have asked DMRC to file its report within six months. The decision was taken at a high power committee meeting held at the Prime Minister's office by the central government.

The Centre Friday promised financial assistance for the Thiruvananthapuram-Mangalore high-speed rail corridor project.

The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation has now been entrusted with preparation of a detaile project report to be submitted within six months.

A decision regarding this was taken at a high level meet convened at the Prime Minister's Office.

A feasibility report by DMRC says that the first phase from Thiruvananthapuram to Kochi might entail an investment of over Rs 40,000 crore.

The second phase that would link Kochi with Mangalore might need an investment of a little over Rs 1.18 lakh crore.

If realised travel from Kochi to Thiruvananthapuram could be covered in 45 minutes.

In a boost to Kerala's efforts to fast-track infrastructure development, the Centre has given the green signal to its ambitious high speed rail corridor project, linking the entire stretch from Kasargode in the north to the state capital in the south.

At a high-level meeting convened at the Prime Minister's Office in Delhi last evening, the state was asked to draw up a Detailed Project Report (DPR) of the scheme, official sources here said.

Pulok Chatterjee, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister, Kerala Chief Secretary P Prabhakaran and Managing Director of Infrastructure Kerala Limited T Balakrishnan were involved in the discussions.

The meeting was convened in response to Chief Minister Oommen Chandy's plea to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh seeking the Centre's support for the mega project.

The 580-km track which will reduce end-to-end running time to two to three hours, is expected to cost Rs. one lakh crore.

Though the finance pattern of the project is yet to be finalised, it is likely to be a Private-Public Partnership' venture with technical and financial collaboration of the Indian Railways, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) and central and state governments, sources said.

The green signal to the high speed rail project has come close on the heels of the Kochi Metro Rail, the basic works for which has already begun.

On coming to power in May 2011, the United Democratic Front Government headed by Chandy unveiled an ambitious development agenda with its focus on infrastructure development.

Key Facts

Route : Trivandrum to Manglore
First Phase : Trivandrum to Cochin (cost: Rs. 43,254 crore)
Second Phase : Cochin to Manglore (cost: Rs. 1,18,050 crore)
Total Cost : Rs. 1,61,304 crore
Top Speed : 350 km/hr
Traveling Speed : 300 km/hr
Traveling Time : Trivandrum to Cochin only 45 minutes.
No. of Stations : 9
Seating Capacity : 817