Indian Railways to cut delays, go for bulk procurement: Railway Minister

NEW DELHI: Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said Railways will now go for bulk procurement and disburse payments within 30 days of all work orders.

Pending projects

The Railway Board, which was meeting every week to clear pending projects, had been directed to put up online list of projects pending with Research Designs and Standard Organisations (RDSO) along with the timeline for approval.

“We want to change the rules of the game now; no more delays in the rail projects should be entertained from now,” said Mr. Goyal at the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII)’s 12th International Railway Equipment Exhibition (IREE) 2017 here.

“I find it a great opportunity to change the mindset with which the Railways has worked for so many years. I am delighted the Railway Board is meeting every week and disposing off all the matters expeditiously,” he said.

The government was working on a system under which it will guarantee payment on the 30th day for everything that was supplied to the Railways.

“Simple things like prompt payment and quick approval of designs bring down costs significantly,” the Minister said.

The Railways will go for bulk procurement for modernisation of trains and railway stations.

“We need at least 2,000 escalators in the railway network and the current cost of procuring an escalator is ₹1 crore. I have asked the Railways to review their entire system of estimates as well. We want to do large scale procurement.” The Railways plans to put up CCTV cameras in all coaches and railway stations.

Further, the Railways is exploring fog light technology for smooth train operations during winters, the Minister said.

He also said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asked for a complete revision of timetable followed by Indian Railways. “We will bring the best of experts around the world to see if passenger trains can run in sequence or if freight trains can also have a timetable. We will explore whether we can guarantee traffic blocks for maintenance so that we can avoid accidents,” Mr. Goyal said.

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