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Working group on railways - 11th 5-yr plan (2007–2012)

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Commuter RailPublic Transport

“Report of the working group on railway programmes for 11th 5-year plan (2007–2012)” has the following salient points with regard to suburban rail. Due to file size, the entire report is not attached to this post.

Pg.34:

Commuter-like traffic around big cities

Railways already have a scheme in place for running of various categories of trains like suburban (EMU, MEMU, DEMU etc) inter-city trains, passenger trains around big cities. A Committee of Executive Directors was constituted to study the introduction of MEMU/DEMU service for the next five years. The Committee has recommended the use of MEMU/DEMU for a distance of 160 kms. Based on the report, it is planned to acquire 55 units each of MEMU & DEMU (1 Motor Car & 3 Trolley Cars) per annum.

Improvement of slow moving passenger trains

Slow moving trains affect capacity severely and certain steps need to be taken to remedy this. The commercial speeds of passenger trains are low on account of high frequency of stoppages as well long duration stoppages. Therefore the stoppages of trains at wayside stations will be reduced to one minute. Optimization of timings will be attempted to reduce time loss in precedence. Parcel traffic for wayside stations will be cleared by passenger trains selectively. Separate parcel trains are planned and the details are discussed in the section on Parcel business.


Pg.35
:

Expansion/improvement of suburban services

Suburban rail services play a major role in urban transport in the metropolitan cities and due to the fast pace of urbanization it is projected that about 50 per cent of Indian population would be living in urban areas by 2031. Existing rail infrastructure in and around the major cities having million plus populations is already saturated. The suburban services would also require separation from main line systems in places like Mumbai. The emphasis in suburban services would be to increase peak time services, and augment trains to 12 car rakes. Suburban EMU services with regenerative braking features for energy conservation and efficiency and introduction of stainless steel EMU coaches to improve the aesthetics will be considered.


Pg.37:

During the Eleventh five-year plan, Indian Railways will work with concerned State governments and design a model contracting agreement that can be the basis for all future suburban projects.


Pgs.41-42:

User-friendly self-operated ticketing machines are being developed and installed. Automatic ticket vending on heavy passenger routes, especially on suburban sections, is being introduced in the current financial year as a pilot project on Western and Central Railways. Such machines will eventually be extended to all metro cities and suburban sections in the country (including non-railhead locations). These machines would be accessible through smart card, debit card/credit card and cash. Ticket distribution shall be further widened using infrastructure of a host of agencies such as post offices, banks, ATMs etc. Smart card based ticketing will also be tried. IT enabled services would also be available in the field of claims and refunds. On-train services will 42 include Internet services, ticketing and transmission of LIVE news, virtual office, and entertainment on demand, in the future.

 
Pg.112:

Suburban Railway Projects

As per the Central Government policy urban mass transport is now under the purview of State government and Ministry of Urban Development. However the existing suburban services on Indian Railways would continue to meet passenger demand. These services are at present loss making and become a bottleneck for running of long distance trains and freight trains on the same tracks. Through proper PPP model these services could be upgraded and losses could be reduced. Gradually suburban services could be separated from other train services.

The sequencing of actions could be separation of accounting, followed by organizational separation creating suburban entities, followed by partnership with state government and private sector in SPV. Such SPV should also have the mandate for modernization and up gradation of services at the request of state government. State Governments should agree to finance on the basis of Peak Cash Deficit Funding by the Indian Railways similar to the funding of Phase II of the rail component of the MUTP being implemented through MRVC. SPV should enter into an agreement with IR for gradually reducing the operating losses reaching zero within a time frame of 5-10 years.

SPV should be allowed to develop alternative sources of revenues through advertising rights, leasing of spaces to service providers etc. IR should get better track availability for its long distance passenger and freight trains after such up gradation.

 
Pg.113:

Partnership with State Government

In order to meet the aspirations of State Governments in getting rail projects executed or expedited in their states, Ministry of Railways has started the concept of cost sharing of financially unviable but socially desirable projects sponsored by the states. Cost-sharing started with suburban rail projects in metro cities and later, it was expanded to take up gauge conversion, doubling and new line projects also. State governments share 1/3rd to 2/3rd of the cost of project under Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Railways for completing the projects in a time bound manner (up to 5 years). Such MOUs have been executed so far with Governments of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal for suburban, new line, and gauge conversion projects.

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idontspam's picture

Here is the full report

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Rlys Working Group Report
idontspam's picture

Use & throw concessionaire?

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Request admins to move this as a blog under nammarailu project.

Interesting observation in this report

"SPV should enter into an agreement with IR for gradually reducing the operating losses reaching zero within a time frame of 5-10 years."

From the PPP in IR report

"SPV shall be granted a concession to construct, operate and maintain the line and in consideration there of, it shall be granted a share in the revenue generated on the project line... the concession shall lapse as soon as the NPV on the project equity reaches zero at a discounted rate of 14%"

Indications to the effect that once the losses are out the window the concessionaire can take a hike?

Naveen's picture

It's the license-permit-raj

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So, SPVs are being welcomed where suburban operations by IR are loss making, & even these SPVs are encouraged to move out after operations have been made loss free !

This denotes the urgent need for IR to reform & removal of the practices from the license permit raj - the policy planning processes within railways appears steeped in outdated, unfair & unethical models for attracting private investments.

n's picture

More comments

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from page 41:

Service related facilities
Physically Challenged/Senior Citizens 
In line with the provisions of Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995, Indian Railways are designing and are manufacturing coaches which have a separate compartment specially designed for wheel chair borne passengers including a suitably designed toilet.  During the Eleventh Plan period all mail/express trains shall be provided with these coaches (Plan head 53).  In addition, trains having air-conditioned accommodation would also be provided with air-conditioned compartments for disabled persons in these specially designed coaches.

Wonder why the same facilities are not extended to all coaches? With wheeled baggage equipment becoming more prevalent being easy to drag, won't it make sense to make amenities more passenger friendly?

from page 47:

Grade Separators/Flyovers & By-pass Lines
In order to ensure free flow of traffic at junction stations, it is essential that different streams of traffic be segregated by providing grade separators (flyovers) or by-pass lines. A list of proposed grade separators / flyovers / by-pass lines at major junction stations is given in Table 5.3. This list could be further expanded / modified based on change in traffic patterns. 

Similar comment with replicating the grade separation (or multi-level) tracks at high density stations - why wasn't this done on "saturated" short corridors or stations before? 

from page 30:

Passenger Projections
There are two main segments in passenger business: suburban and non-suburban (or long distance). Suburban passengers constitute the bulk of passenger numbers, the ratio between suburban and non-suburban passengers being 59:41.  

In spite of carrying majority of the passengers, the suburban services are loss-making - reasons are still unclear.

from page 35:

Expansion/improvement of suburban services 
Suburban rail services play a major role in urban transport in the metropolitan cities and due to the fast pace of urbanization it is projected that about 50 per cent of Indian population would be living in urban areas by 2031.  Existing rail infrastructure in and around the major cities having million plus populations is already saturated.

Again, reason unknown for the saturation; lack of modern signalling? staff? slower average train speeds? station capacity constraints? land constraints for doubling? The issues are probably varied and should be addressed on a case by case basis.

As in all things govt., progress exists but is very slow compared to other countries that are moving ahead.


Naveen's picture

Suburban services - too low fares

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In spite of carrying majority of the passengers, the suburban services are loss-making - reasons are still unclear

Since IR has a policy to keep suburban fares very low, revenues are correspondingly poor. Mumbai's local trains (said to be cheapest in the world), though carrying some 7 million a day, are still losing money. Out of the 3646 million suburban passengers during 2006-07, Mumbai accounts for almost 2373 million, or 65% (6.5 million /day X 365).

suburban services - reason unknown for the saturation; lack of modern signalling? staff? slower average train speeds? station capacity constraints? land constraints for doubling? The issues are probably varied and should be addressed on a case by case basis. As in all things govt., progress exists but is very slow compared to other countries that are moving ahead

Very true, & I think it's a combination of all the possible reasons you mentioned ! IR is so out of tune with present day needs & realities that progress has been seriously hampered.

idontspam's picture

SWR computerises track-monitoring system

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V Haribabu, said now that the computerisation was over, they could monitor any activity happening around 1,000 km of the railway tracks belonging to Bangalore division

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lack of modern signalling? staff? slower average train speeds? station capacity constraints? land constraints for doubling?

FINALLY, the have started work on the first 2. Now they can gather proof to prove they are waaaay behind on track utilization. They should be able to measure dwell times properly now and open it up for 3rd party audit. Maybe a railway board vigilance comittee. Automated block signalling should be next.

Hopefully they can start work on the last 3 in parellel, double tracks, pass thru tracks in stations etc. Looks like Mr Mani bringing a fresh pair of hands & feet is getting around to doing things. Hope Mr Babu can increase the %age of CRS happening from 2 to some large double digit number.

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