An expert group on modernisation of Indian Railways has recommended an investment of Rs 5.6 lakh crore (Rs 5.6 trillion) during 12th and 13th Five Year Plans, while the Safety Review Committee has sought an investment of Rs 1 lakh crore (Rs 1 trillion) for five years, the Rajya Sabha was informed on Friday.
In a written reply to the House, Railways Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal said the recommendations are presently under examination by the ministry.
"The Expert Group for Modernisation of Indian Railways chaired by Sam Pitroda and the High Level Safety Review Committee chaired by Anil Kakodkar have submitted recommendations primarily regarding ways and means for modernisation of railways, and a road map for improving safety," he said.
The reports have also suggested the estimated costs of implementing these recommendations as well as possible sources of funding.
"The Expert Group for Modernisation has indicated an investment requirement of Rs 5.6 lakh crore (Rs 5.6 trillion) over the 12th and 13th Five Year Plan terms.
"The High Level Safety Review Committee has also indicated an investment requirement of Rs 1 lakh crore over a period of five years," Bansal said.
All recommendations are presently under examination in the Railways Ministry and the actual requirement of resources for Modernisation and Safety would depend on recommendations accepted by the government, he added.
The resource requirement would be met from the investment that are part of the 12th Five Year Plan and from other sources of revenue generation including those suggested in the reports, the minister said.
Replying to a question on construction of Model stations, Adarsh Stations and World Class stations, Bansal said upgradation of stations under various schemes is a continuous process and works are completed as per availability of resources.
"Out of 594 stations identified under Model Station scheme, 569 stations have already been developed and remaining 25 stations are targeted for development by March 2013.
Out of 976 stations identified under Adarsh Stations Scheme, 616 stations have been developed so far," he said.
Fifty stations are identified for development as World Class Stations through Public-Private Partnership mode and no station was targeted for completion as World class during the last three years, Bansal said.
In reply to a question on introduction of bullet trains between Ahmedabad-Mumbai and Pune, Minister of State for Railways Kotla Jaya Surya Prakash Reddy said pre-feasibility study for this high speed corridor was completed in April 2010.
A Project Steering Group has been constituted with Chairman Railway Board, Secretary Department of Economic Affairs and Secretary Planning Commission to examine and finalise the options for implementing the project.
On timelines, the Minister said, "As the project has not been sanctioned, no timeframe can be indicated."
On increasing the fares of container trains, Reddy said the haulage rates which were in force since January 2011, have been revised with effect from Dec 2012.
"Additional earning that is expected to accrue annually on account of this revision is approximately Rs 600 crore (Rs 6 billion)," he said.