Technological Upgradation of Railway System

Modernization and technological upgradation of the railway system is an ongoing process and is one of the thrust areas of the 11th Five Year Plan (2007-2012). Various modernization activities covering passenger business, freight business and other areas were identified for implementation in the Integrated Railway Modernization Plan (IRMP) for the period 2005-2010. The plan to improve safety in signaling system include provision of route relay interlocking/panel interlocking/electronic interlocking, colour light signaling, LED Signals, axle counters, track circuiting, data loggers, onboard train protection system and interlocking of level crossing gates. To improve telecom infrastructure, it is planned to provide Optic Fibre and Quad Cables and Mobile Train Radio Communication, Satellite Communication and Voice Recorders.

Modern technology and systems not only prevent failures including human errors, they enable detection of failures like rail fractures, other equipment failures and obstruction of track etc. During the last three years, 12,530 kilometers of track renewals have been done; 20,200 route kilometers of Optic Fibre and Quad Cable laid, Mobile Train Radio Communication (MTRC) commissioned on 700 route kilometers, 230 remote locations connected through V-Set Network and Voice Recorders provided in all Control Offices.

This information was given by the Minister of State for Ministry of Railways, Shri K. H. Muniyappa in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.

Published in: on July 31, 2009 at 5:11 pm  Leave a Comment  

Computerisation of goods & parcel booking

Now more than 70 per cent of goods loaded on Indian Railways is being booked through computer. First phase of goods booking through computer has been completed. Implementation of second phase to cover the balance goods is going to commence shortly.

Computerization of parcel booking has been planned for implementation. A pilot project for parcel booking on New Delhi-Howrah route has been experimented. Full fledged implementation of this on Indian Railways is underway.

This information was given by the Minister of State for Ministry of Railways, Shri K. H. Muniyappa in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.

Railways to issue Rs 2K cr tech deals

The Indian Railways has Rs 2,000 crore worth contracts in store including a deal earlier bagged by Mahindra Satyam. CNBC-TV18’s Kritika Saxena learns that TCS, HCL are leading in the race for the bid.

Sources tell us that the Indian Railways has Rs 2,000 crore worth of IT deals on the block. We learn that Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and HCL Technologies are the frontrunners for all of the deals. There were a large number of IT companies who had bid for a number of these projects but TCS and HCL are the frontrunners.

The first deal is a Rs 100 crore deal which is for the software development of locomotive management systems (LMS). This LMS contract was earlier bagged by Mahindra Satyam, but since Mahindra Satyam could not provide its financial details right now, the project was cancelled by the Indian railways.

Now, TCS and HCL, while they are the frontrunners for this bid, had not contended at all owing to the fact that it is Rs 100 crore deal.

The other deals that are on the anvil are larger deals. The second one is Rs 450 crore deal which is for a software aided train scheduling management systems which will allow real time train scheduling and management by the help of a software solution.

There are three other projects on the anvil, the first one is Rs 450 crore project and two others are worth Rs 500 crore each which would be coming up in next three-four months. The Indian Railways, however, could not comment on the perspective of the deals and company policies did not allow TCS or HCL to give comments on the same.

First Rail-cum-Road-Vehicle on trial

Lucknow A first of its kind Rail-cum-Road-Vehicle (RCRV) that can run at a speed of 60 kilometers per hour both on railway track and roads is almost ready.
Being developed by a Lucknow-based automotive unit, the test run of the vehicles was performed on Wednesday under the guidance of engineers from Diesel Locomotive Modernisation Works (DMW), Patiala, an unit of the Indian Railway.

The DMW had commissioned Raaj Automotive to develop four such vehicles.

Developed on a truck chassis, the fully air-conditioned vehicle will be used by the Railways as a running laboratory.

“Besides being equipped with instruments to check the vibration of tracks when the train moves on the bridge, the vehicle will be of immense help needed for extension of tracks,” said Alok Aggarwal, proprietor of Raaj Automotive, an authorised vendor of Indian Railways.

The most significant utility of RCRV will be during accidental hazards. “If a technical snag or any other emergency forces a train to get stranded in an isolated spot, through this vehicle, relief can be rushed in minimum time through road and rail route,” said Aggarwal. With its hauling capacity of 600 tons with coach brake and 150 tons without coach brake, the vehicle is capable of pushing or pulling the coach.

Also, the vehicle can be used as a fire tender or ambulance in an emergency. “A 40 litre water tank which can eject water with the same pressure as commercial fire tenders is attached with the vehicle,” said Aggarwal.

The RCRV, which runs on diesel, also houses a generator, inverter, wash basin, revolving chair, intercom system, tube lights, switch board andfans — giving its interior a luxurious look.

The exterior look of the vehicle is truck-like.

“The steel wheels through which it can move on tracks are fitted through a hydraulic system and can be pressed into service through a small button,” said Aggarwal.

Costing around Rs 30 lakh, vehicles would be sent to DMW, Patiala, after the final clearance. “We have suggested some minor technical changes into the design and after they are incorporated, the final clearance will be given,” said Rajinder Singh, senior section engineer, DMW, who was in Lucknow for the inspection.

Sanjeev Garg, secretary, DMW Patiala, said the Railways has given orders for around 30 such vehicles to different vendors across India. “It’s a wonderful device and will be of immense help to the Railways,” he said.

Railways to set up 1000 MW power plant in Nabinagar

New Delhi, July 31 (PTI) Railways would set up a 1000 MW capacity power plant at Nabinagar in Bihar to meet its power requirements.

The plant will be set up under a joint venture with NTPC, Minister of State for Railways E Ahamed told the Rajya Sabha today.

Railways have already formed ‘Bharatiya Bijlee Company Limited’ for initiating power projects for it.

In a written reply in the House, Ahamed said the upcoming plant will feed 164 traction sub-stations located in Eastern and Western region of the country.

Railways consumed more than 14,096 million Kwh in 2007-08 for operational (traction) and non operational (non traction) purposes.

Its power needs are also fulfilled by different state utilities and companies like Tata Electric, Damodar Valley Corporation and NTPC.

Published in: on July 31, 2009 at 4:48 pm  Leave a Comment  

Women compete for post of Coolies

Allahabad, July 31 (PTI) The railways have for the first time allowed women to apply for the post of porters at its stations.

According to Chief Public Relations Officer of North Central Railway Rajesh Dutt Bajpai, “A total of 19 women have appeared for the physical endurance test which was concluded here yesterday”.

“This is for the first time that the Railway Board issued revised guidelines for recruitment of porters as per which women could compete alongside their male counterparts for the posts,” he said.

“There are a total of 344 vacancies for porters in the NCR zone, for which 4800 candidates, including 27 women, had applied. After initial scrutiny, which included a general inspection of physical well-being, 19 women were allowed to take the physical endurance test,” Bajpai said.–coolies–in-railways

Railways constitute Expert Committee on innovative funding

The Ministry of Railways (Railway Board) has constituted an Expert Committee for developing innovative funding techniques through Public Private Partnership (PPP) instruments. Kumari Mamata Banerjee, Minister for Railways, had earlier announced the formation of this committee in her Railway Budget speech in the Parliament.

The committee, under the chairmanship of Dr Amit Mitra, Secretary General, FICCI has been asked to start offering recommendations within fifteen days of its first meeting. It will identify economically unviable, but socially desirable projects for implementing them through innovative funding. It will also develop Vision 2020 for the railways.

The expert committee has been specifically asked to consider developing business models in respect of the Delhi – Mumbai industrial corridor, utilizing railway land bank along side the Eastern Dedicated Freight Corridor for starting projects in rolling stock production, assembly facilities and coach rehabilitation at Dankuni-Majerhat-Nowpara, private freight terminals and multi modal logistics parks, private public participation in setting up the new coach factory at Kanchrappara – Halisahar Railway complex and setting up of a 1000 MW power plant at Adra in collaboration with the NTPC. The committee will consider developing world class stations and multi functional complexes.It will also review the status of progress of ongoing activities undertaken by the Railways.

Published in: on July 27, 2009 at 4:18 pm  Leave a Comment  

Texmaco to make Metro coaches

Kolkata, July 23 (IANS) KK Birla group company Texmaco Ltd is in the last leg of finalising a joint venture with three Japanese companies led by Kawasaki to make Metro rail coaches, a top official said here Thursday.

Texmaco will be part of the alliance through its newly formed 50:50 joint venture with the United Group of Australia.

Toshiba and Itochu are the other two Japanese partners in the project.

“The total investment will be Rs.300 crore, which would be used for setting up a greenfield plant near Kolkata,” Texmaco chairman Saroj Kumar Poddar told reporters on the sidelines of the company’s annual general meeting.

Texmaco’s Australian joint venture will invest another Rs.100 crore to make specialised stainless steel wagons, Poddar said.

“We are anticipating that we will have less than 50 percent share in the joint venture with the Japanese consortium,” said company president and chief executive Ramesh Maheswari.

A memorandum of understanding has been signed with the Japanese consortium.

Texmaco, which is predominantly engaged in wagon manufacturing, has a 30 percent market share, and has an order book of Rs.1,800 crore.

The company will raise around Rs.150-200 crore through qualified institutional placement (QIP) routes soon.

“The QIP would meet our immediate investment plans for our project with the Australian partner,” Poddar said.

The company posted a profit after tax of Rs.20.84 crore for the first quarter this fiscal.

Published in: on July 23, 2009 at 4:39 pm  Leave a Comment  
Tags: ,

Rlys to introduce mobile charging facility in sleeper class

Railways have decided to introduce mobile phone charging facility in sleeper class coaches of every train in a phased manner for passenger benefit, the Lok Sabha was informed today.

Minister of State for Railways K H Muniyappa said in a written reply that such facility has already been introduced in some coaches in Saurashtra Mail and Saurashtra Janata Express.

Earlier, Railways had also announced in the House that internet facility would be provided in some of the prestigious trains.

To another query on ensuring security in trains, the Minister said some of the existing RPF and RPSF personnel are being imparted commando training by various organisations like NSG, CRPF, Punjab police and Assam Rifles among others.

He, however, said there is no commando battalion in Railways at present.

Golf to be included in Golden Chariot’s itinerary

Bangalore, Jul 23 (PTI) The Golden Chariot – the luxury train which takes passengers on a royal odyssey from the garden city to the heritage site of Hampi will now boast of an added attraction – golf.

The promoters hit upon this idea to cater to markets like Japan, which are opening up to luxury tourism ventures like the Golden Chariot. “Introducing golf will be an added incentive to travel to this part of the country and enjoy the sport which they are very passionate about,” Project Director Golden Chariot, Anand Menon told PTI.

Karnataka has quite a few number of golf courses to boast of. Right from Bangalore, Mysore, Chikmagalur and Belgaum, the state has a number of golf courses of international standards.

“By adding golf in the itinerary we are attempting to add to the very definition of luxury per se.