With Indian Railways starting the process of allowing private players to operate passenger trains in its network as it invited Request for Qualification (RFP), the national transporter identified 14 potential routes in Karnataka to run such trains.
Bengaluru – Patna ( 5 days a week), Bengaluru-Gorakhpur (Bi-Weekly), Bengaluru-Prayagraj (Bi-Weekly), Bengaluru-Visakhapatnam (Tri-Weekly), Bengaluru-Jaipur(Weekly), Chennai-Mangaluru (Weekly), Guwahati-Bengaluru (Tri-Weekly), Mysuru-Guwahati (Tri-Weekly), Mysuru-Bubaneshwar (Daily), Bengaluru-Delhi (Daily), Bengaluru-Howrah (Daily), Ranchi-Bengaluru (Bi-Weekly), Kalaburagi-Mumbai (6 days a week), Mangaluru-Mysuru (6 days a week) are the routes identified by railways.
As per proposal, private players can bid for operation on trains on 109 pairs of routes across the country, through the introduction of 151 modern trains.
Out of 106 pairs of routes, the railways identfied 14 routes connecting major cities in Karnataka to other places where demand for passenger trains are high. These trains will be in addition to existing trains on these routes. The existing trains plying on these routes will continue to operate, said an official in the railways.
Earlier Railway Board Chairman V K Yadav said, the private operators are allowed to bring their own train sets, maintained by them. Private train operations are likely to begin by April 2023, all coaches will be procured under Make in India policy.
The concession period for the project will be 35 years and private entities will be responsible for financing, procuring, operation and maintenance of the trains.