Gandhidham-Tuna-Tekra rail line, built on PPP Model, to be launched today

Gandhidham (GIMB): The Gandhidham-Tuna-Tekra rail line, built under the non-government route — one of the five public-private partnership (PPP) systems that can take place in Indian Railways — will be commissioned on July 14.

The new broad-gauge line between Gandhidham and Tuna-Tekra port is built by Kandla Port Trust under “participative models for rail connectivity and capacity augmentation.” The total length of the line is 17.02 km and the total cost of the project is about Rs 185 crore.

Under the non-government private line model, first/last-mile connectivity to the main railway line needs to be construed as an integral part of the main project. The construction of freight lines for sea ports, large mines, logistic parks, and other similar industries/industrial clusters could be developed by the owner/concessionaire of the facility as private railway line by acquiring land and making investments in the line. This would be declared as non-government railway for public carriage of mostly goods but also passengers, if needed.

Under this model, as the line built by the developer is on private land and is primarily private infrastructure, there is no concession period for the transfer of assets to the government. However, since the ministry of railways is required to pay user charges to the developer and since the line is to be utilised by multiple users, it is treated as railway administration under the Railway Act, 1989. The developers do not have the flexibility to charge their own tariff. The railways will decide the tariff for the project line.