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Friday, April 23, 2010

India's railway plan: Loud Thunder, little rain again

Last time, I wrote about India's insufficient action to fulfil its ambitious plan for adding power generation capacity. The same story is happening in India's railway system without any exception.

BTW, new data released by India government shows that India added only 9585 mw of new power capacity in 2009-2010 fisical year (india's fisical year ends in March), against the overall target of 14,507 MW.

The achievement during 2008-09 was 31 per cent (3,454 MW against a target of 11,061 MW) and 57 per cent in 2007-08 (9,263 MW against a target of 16,335 MW).(Source)

You cannot imagine that a country of 1.1 billion population could only build 513 km of new railways in 2 years, but its leaders are still shamelessly talking about improving infrastructure quickly and bragging that India is catching up with China.

For a convenient comparison, China built more than 30,000km of new railways in the 30 years before the reform. That means China built more than 1,000 km of new line each year 30 years ago.

In 2009 alone, China constructed new railroad lines of 5,461km, 4,063km of new double lines. Total of 5,557 km of new lines were put into operation, including 2,319 km of new high-speed lines. 8,849 km railways were electrified in 2009 alone. (Source)

The following reports came from here.

Indian Railways could achieve only 28 per cent of the total 11th Five-Year Plan (2007-12) targets in the first two years.

"Performance of the Railways, in the first two years of the plan period, was much below the proportionate targets as it could achieve only 28 per cent of total plan size," according to the latest report of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India.

It was planned to add 2,000 kms of new lines, convert 10,000 km of metre/narrow gauge into broad gauge, double the 6,000 km of single track and electrify 3,500 km of routes during the 11th Plan.

However, in the first two years of the plan period, 513 km (25.65 per cent) of new lines, 2,612 km (26.12 per cent) of gauge conversion, 789 kms (13.15 per cent) of doubling and 1,299 km (37.11 per cent) of electrification was completed.

The report revealed that out of 144 ongoing railway projects, six projects have been delayed by over 10 years.

The anticipated cost of completion of these projects has been revised to Rs 13,055.47 crore (Rs 130.55 billion) from original cost of 3,463.60 crore (Rs 34.63 billion).

The 11th Plan size of Rs 2,33,289 crore (Rs 2,332.89 billion) envisages financing of Rs 63,635 crore (Rs 636.35 billion) through general budgetary support, Rs 90,000 crore (Rs 900 billion) through internal resources and Rs 79,654 crore (Rs 796.54 billion) through extra budgetary resources.

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