NEW DELHI (Metro Rail News): On Monday Railway Board Chairman Vinod Yadav said that Indian Railways have decided not to manufacture any more Vande Bharat Express rakes in the current financial year.
He added, “The energy consumption of the train was much more than the world standards. We realized that when we do mass production, we cannot have such high energy consumption. So we decided to review the specifications that they become energy efficient. We will not be able to make any more Vande Bharat Express in 2019-20, but will produce 15 between 2020 and 2021, and 25 in 2021-2022″.
He further added that the issues with the train have been addressed and 40 more such trains will be produced till March 2022.
The production of this self-propelled engine-less train sets was stopped over allegations of favoritism and lack of transparency earlier this year. In July, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal met representatives of manufacturers and promised a transparent level-playing field to all of them.
Indian railways will put in place a regulator as and when private operators take over to run trains. The regulator will look into various issues such as fares, the routes such trains can run on, along with the crucial aspect of safety, Railway Board Chairman Vinod Yadav said on Monday.
Yadav said “We are studying all the issues related to pricing, with respect to private train operators. Private train operators will not come immediately but we will have to prepare for it from now. Whenever a private player comes in, a regulator will also come, adding that no decision on this regard will be taken without consulting all stakeholders.
This comes at the backdrop of the Indian railways allowing its tourism and catering subsidiary IRCTC to run Tejas trains, which is touted to be a train that will be run by an entity other than the national transporter. Handing over these two trains to IRCTC is expected to help the national transporter consider the option of roping in private players to run trains, which will cater to the larger idea of providing world-class service to passengers.
The train service has gained traction amongst rail travelers and is hailed as a game-changer akin to what a Rajdhani or Shatabdi did for the people’s mover. IRCTC will run Tejas trains on two routes—Delhi-Lucknow and, Ahmedabad-Mumbai Central, with the latter expected to begin operations around December.