The Railways have decided to offer over 500 acres of prime land to private developers at over 13 locations across the country.
The cities that have been earmarked for the purpose include Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Bangalore, apart from Lucknow, Vishakapatnam, Gwalior and Gaya.
The newly set up Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA), which was formed to commercially exploit the large tracts of land available with the Indian Railways, will offer the land through a public-private partnership (PPP) model.
Under the PPP model, the railways will form joint ventures in which the land will represent the railways' portion of the equity. The plots will be developed for commercial use in the form of shopping malls, office space, plazas and multiplexes.
A consultant is being appointed to work out the details of the project. The sites were short-listed from an earlier list of 61 locations at an RLDA board meeting a few days ago.
In Delhi, land around the Sarai Rohilla railway station has been earmarked for development. Belgharia and Bidhan Nagar are the two sites in Kolkata. The other locations in West Bengal are Halishahar, Balighat and Kanchrapara.
The Gautam Buddha Institute in Gaya and the Railway Institute in Lucknow are also among the sites.
In Mumbai, six sites at prime locations, owned by the Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation, have been short-listed.Most of these sites constitute vacant unused land. Indian Railways have around 43,000 hectares of unused land. The authority is headed by Member (Electrical) A K Bhatnagar of the Railway Board.