Railways acquires majority land for freight corridor

The Railways has acquired over 80 per cent of land required for building a dedicated freight corridor (DFC) across nine states in the country.

The work will start in few months as the contract for track work will be awarded soon after acquiring another 1000 kms.

This was revealed to Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal, who reviewed the crucial project, on Monday. Officials told the minister that the initial December 2016 dateline for commissioning the entire project may be pushed further.

They explained that due to requirement of environmental clearances, and sequential processing of different phases of the project by funding agencies like World Bank, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the commissioning of DFC would be done in phases starting from December 2015. Two corridors — the Western DFC and Eastern DFC — spanning a total length of about 3300 km are to be built.

The Eastern Corridor, starting from Ludhiana in Punjab will pass through Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and will terminate at Dankuni in West Bengal. The Western Corridor will traverse the distance from Dadri in UP to Mumbai, passing through Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Maharashtra.

The DFC is being built by Dedicated Freight Corridor Corporation of India (DFCCIL) — a special purpose vehicle. Vinay Mittal, Railway Board Chairman, told the minister that environmental clearance for the corridor to pass through two wildlife sanctuaries and one bird sanctuary was received in 10 to 16 months.

Acquisition of 7968 hectares of land, constituting over 82 per cent, marks completion of a major landmark of 80 per cent land acquisition stipulated by the funding agencies.

The land that spreads across nine states and 61 districts had been acquired in less than three years. The remaining 18 per cent of land acquisition is also progressing steadily.



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