Nagpur: Buoyed by the successful maintenance of locos and transition of electric loco shed at Ajni, the Railway Board has offered another major facility and training centre to maintain 12,000 horse power (HP) locos at Ajni under the Nagpur Central Railway.
According to railway sources, the Rs.100 crore facility will come up in 10-12 acre with public-private partnership (PPP) near existing loco shed at Ajni where huge space is available. Railways is giving top priority to construction of freight related projects on PPP basis.
Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) OP Singh confirmed that project to maintain 12,000 HP locos was coming up at Ajni. “The electric locos that will be manufactured at Madhepura in Bihar will be maintained at Ajni. Tenders for the project have been opened and entire process is being handled and managed by the Railway Board,” Singh said.
The entire new facility will have the latest equipment. Ajni loco shed, spread in 18.5 acres, presently maintains WAG-7 & WAG-9 locos used for hauling freight trains and WAP-7 engines used for premium trains like Duronto and Rajdhani.
However, the locos currently maintained at Ajni are 6,000 HP locomotives. These engines can transport up to 5,500 tonne material consisting of 58 wagons. However, 12,000 HP engines will be able to ferry 10,000 tonne goods with double the number of wagons what are being used now.
Sources said the 12,000 HP locos would be operated on the Rs.81,459 crore ambitious dedicated freight corridor (DFC), meant for faster goods movement. The project is expected to be completed by 2019 and before the DFC is ready railways wants the basic infrastructure to be ready.
With the new loco maintenance facility, a training institute at the same place for staff has been planned. The project is expected to be in place in next two-three years. The decision was taken after executive director (electrical) Sudhir Kumar and DRM Singh had met in Nagpur. “The duo had also visited the spot at Ajni,” sources said.
The Ajni loco shed after its transition is continuously marching ahead. Despite having a capacity of maintaining 175 locos annually, it has achieved a target of 208, that too with existing staff and infrastructure. The locos maintained at Ajni are moving across the Indian Railways network.
The Ajni loco shed, set up in 1990, will complete 25 years on October 22, and Central Railway has planned a host of cultural and sports competitions to celebrate the success of the shed which has come a long way.