Gujarat section of bullet train project readies for phased launch
28 Sep 2023 CW Team
The Mumbai-Ahmedabad high-speed rail corridor, which is India's inaugural bullet train initiative, is preparing for the gradual launch of the 352-kilometre-long section in Gujarat, with operations expected to commence by August 2027. It appears that achieving partial operation by August 2027 may be improbable due to an overall physical progress of 36.13%, falling short of the 38.3% target. The National High Speed Rail Corporation (NHSRCL) is intensifying its efforts to overcome this 2.17%deficit, as indicated by the most recent data. NHSRCL has already obtained 97% of the land required for the 352-kilometer Gujarat segment, which is part of the larger 508-kilometre Mumbai-Ahmedabad route. The Indian Railways has identified the commissioning of the Vapi-Sabarmati section in Gujarat as a top priority. However, achieving this goal depends on Japan and India mutually agreeing to set August 2027 as a common target. Since JICA is the project's financier, Japan might contemplate a phased commissioning if India is willing to establish feasible milestones in the bidding document.