NEW DELHI: The NITI Aayog has reviewed progress of the Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Rail project for which the ground breaking ceremony will take place during the visit of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe later this year.
The meeting chaired by NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Arvind Panagariya, was also attended by 20-member Japanese delegation last week, decided to expedite preliminary work and obtain environmental clearances. This was 4th high level meeting on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Rail Project.
“The review of the project was taken. Idea is that to put pressure on ground to implement it as soon as possible. We are making satisfactory progress,” said a NITI Aayog official who attended the meeting.
The ground breaking ceremony, he said, would be held at the time of visit of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe some time later this year.
“A general consultant from Japan has started working on the project since December 2016… Next step would be to do Environment Impact Assessment (EIA),” the official said.
He further said that ground construction for the project will commence by the end of 2018 and the train service is likely to be operational from 2023.
The high speed railway line between the two prominent cities in Western India is expected to cover 508 km in about two hours, running at a maximum speed of 350 kmph and operating speed of 320 kmph.
Estimated to cost about Rs 97,636 crore, 81 per cent of the funding for the project will come by way of a loan from Japan.
While most part of the corridor is proposed to be on the elevated track, there will be a stretch after Thane creek towards Virar which will go under the sea as per the detailed project report by JICA.