Railways invites Financial Bids for Dankuni, Madhepura Loco Units

Procurement process for high-powered locos gets traction

New Delhi: Aiming at the procurement and production of 1,000 high-powered electric locomotives for its Dedicated Freight Corridor operations, the railways has kickstarted the process to award contracts for the same with the projects to involve its existing Dankuni unit and the proposed Madhepura factory. Railways has invited Financial Bids for rolling out locomotives from the Electric Locomotive Factories at Dankuni, West Bengal and Madhepura in Bihar.

The bidding due date for the Dankuni plant, from which 9,000 horse power locos would be produced, is June 30. The bidding due date for the Madhepura plant, from which 12,000 horse power locos will be produced, is August 31. This was told to media by Navin Tandon, Member-Electrical, Railway Board, in a press conference.

Electric Locomotive Factory at Dankuni will work as an ancillary unit of CLW. Initially state of art 3-phase high HP locomotive with regenerative breaking of 6000 HP (WAG-9) electric locomotive will be turned out. Subsequently, the infrastructural facilities shall be utilized for the production of 9000 HP locomotives in future.

There will be 200 electric locomotives of 9,000 horsepower (HP) each that are to be produced at its Dankuni unit in West Bengal, Railway Member (Electrical) Navin Tandon said here today, adding that these engines are required for the Western Dedicated Freight Corridor.

Since the Western DFC is funded by Japan, a Japanese firm will be selected through the bidding process on June 30 for the Dankuni project, he said.  The tender stipulates that 40 locomotives will be imported from Japan, while the rest are to be manufactured in India.

The 1,483-km long Western DFC will extend from Jawaharlal Nehru Port (JNPT) in Mumbai to Tughlakabad and Dadri near Delhi while the 1,839-km long Eastern DFC will connect Ludhiana in Punjab to Dankuni near Kolkata. The eastern corridor is expected to handle double-stack container movement.

“We have also floated global tenders for setting up a modern locomotive factory at Madhepura for manufacturing 800 locos of 12,000 HP each. These will be required in the Eastern Dedicated Freight Corridor,” he said.

Bidding process for the Madhepura project, which is to be a joint venture, is expected to be over by the year-end and 100 locos will be manufactured in the first year of the operation of the factory.

Meanwhile, Tandon also said that steps are being taken to procure 15 EMU-type train sets for inter-city connectivity.

A train set comprises coaches or railway cars where each coach is powered by a dedicated propulsion system. That means there is no locomotive required to haul the train.

While 40 coaches will be imported, 275 coaches will be manufactured here, he said.

With the government allowing 100 per cent FDI in rail sector, setting up of locomotive factory is crucial for Railways to give a boost to infrastructure sector. The big ticket joint venture project is poised to take off after considerable delays, re-thinking and prolonged due diligence amid repeated revision of bidding documents.

The Madhepura plant will manufacture 800 electric locomotives of 12,000 horse power over 11 years. While five locomotives will be imported, 795 will be manufactured at Madhepura. Railways will have 26 per equity while the global player will have 74 per cent equity in the project.