Railways forms company to handle green power biz

The Indian Railways has formed a new entity — Renewable Energy Management Company — to handle its renewable energy portfolio.

The Railways has an installed capacity of 5 MW of solar and 10.5 MW of wind power. Plans are afoot to install another 8 MW of solar power, according to Anil Kumar Saxena, Additional Director-General, Indian Railways.

Given its size and presence across the country, the Railways has been asked by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy to evaluate the potential of solar power generation, sources said. This, according to the Ministry, will help save on power consumption and help it get the electricity at stable rates over the next 25 years.

Rising bill

The Indian Railways spent Rs 24,130 crore on fuel in FY12. This includes over Rs 3 crore for coal, Rs 10,628 crore for diesel (2.71 million Kilo litres) and about Rs 13,500 crore on power bills for locos, suburban locals and other needs.

Locos and EMU services alone consume 12,762 million units. The Railways still burn 1,000 tonnes of coal a year to run steam locomotives on some sections in the Southern and the Northeast Frontier Railway.

Estimates indicate that there is potential to harness 193 MW of solar power alone through rooftop application on rail land and buildings.

The Ministry also wants the Railways to participate in the bidding of 750 MW grid-connected projects under the National Solar Mission, slated to come up shortly.

The sources said tenders for installation of solar units at 200 stations and 21 office-buildings are in progress. The Railways will also float bids for setting up solar units at 1,000 level-crossings. It will identify about 10 locations to install off-grid solar thermal systems for use in cooking and laundry.

A detailed project report for this will be sought from consultants in a couple of months. Going forward, workshops, manufacturing facilities and training centres may also be equipped with solar and solar thermal plants.

Last week, the Rail Land Development Authority said it had tied up with global property consultant Knight Frank India to monetise vacant railway land at 53 locations across the South and West. This again would enhance the rooftop coverage of solar panels for the Railways.

Knight Frank will solicit ‘expression of interest’ from developers, retailers and hoteliers and manage the bidding process.

The rail authority has over 120 sites across the country, which it intends to lease out through competitive bidding.

The plan is to develop multi-functional complexes to provide amenities to commuters, including budget hotels at stations, while generating additional revenue for the Railways in the process.


Rlys lists 75 spots for multi-functional complexes

The railway department has drawn up a list of 75 more multi-functional complexes (MFCs) on land adjacent to stations and hopes to earn, through private participation, around Rs 1,000 crore this fiscal.

The Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA) initiated the bidding process for the commercial complexes, which would include food stalls, restaurants, book stalls, ATMs and parking lots, said a senior ministry official.

According to the official, Dehradun, Ujjain, Vasai Road, Anand, Somnath, Lokmanya Tilak Terminus, Gulbarga, Vijayawada, Amritsar, Amethi and Chandigarh will have the MFCs.

The RLDA is holding meeting in Hyderabad on Thursday to invite bids for commercial development of the MFCs at eight stations in cities of tourist and religious interest of Andhra Pradesh that include Dharmavaram, Karimnagar, Kurnool Town, Nellore, Nizamabad, Vijayawada, Zahirabad and Kacheguda.


Multi functional complexes at five stations soon

Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA) today announced appointment of private developers for development of Multi Functional Complexes (MFCs) at five stations – Cuttack, Dehradun, Jhansi, Katra and Nanded.

Railways have introduced the concept of MFC at railway stations beginning year 2009-10 for developing facilities for rail users at one centralised complex.

Indian Railways operate more than 7000 stations across the country.

“The aim is to upgrade the existing amenities for the rail users in cities having tourist and religious importance by way of developing the land/air space at railway stations, said a senior Railway Ministry official.

MFCs are being developed through private investment to provide rail users with facilities such as shopping, food stalls/ restaurants, book stalls, ATMs, medicines and variety stores, budget hotels, parking etc.

RLDA, a statutory authority established by Railway Ministry for generating non-tariff revenue from railway land, had appointed Knight Frank India as marketing consultant for the first six MFCs to be developed through private parties. Out of the six MFCs, five MFCs were awarded to Keshari Estates Ltd (Cuttack), Janak Holdings (Dehradun and Nanded), Bhagwati Infraestate Pvt. Ltd. (Jhansi) and MGC Estates (Katra).

A total 86 MFCs will be developed by RLDA across the country through private parties as part of the second phase of the MFC project announced in the rail budget in the year 2010-11. Bidding for the second phase is to be initiated soon.


Published in: on February 20, 2011 at 7:53 am  Leave a Comment  
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