Ranchi Division eyes Biz Summit to tap infra majors for new-age Station Revamp

RANCHI: Ranchi railway division is hoping to tap infrastructure giants during the forthcoming Global Investors’ Summit for redeveloping the capital’s station, which was today formally included in a list of 23 stations up for modernisation in the first phase.

According to senior commercial divisional manager of the Ranchi division Niraj Kumar, railway minister Suresh Prabhu would be announcing the launch of first phase of the project on February 8 when detailed presentations would be made via videoconferencing to explain the manner in which the project would be taken forward.

“We are up for the challenge and the Global Investors’ Summit in Ranchi will give us a proper window to tap on potential players to rope in for our station revamp project,” Kumar told.

He said they were planning to invite local builders as well as infrastructure majors to be present during the videoconferencing programme. “All senior officials of the division will be present to answer all queries,” he added.

As per the Centre’s plan, 400 stations across the country would be redeveloped. Today, South Eastern Railways (SER) announced two stations under its jurisdiction for phase-I. These are Ranchi and Howrah stations.

The plan to redevelop 400 stations was first announced in the Union Budget of 2015.

Nine of Jharkhand’s stations are in the list. Besides Ranchi, other stations to be developed in future are Hatia and Bokaro of South Eastern Railway, Daltonganj, Gomoh, Koderma and Parasnath of East Central Railway and Jasidih and Madhupur of Eastern Railway.

Sanjoy Ghosh, the chief public relations officer of the Calcutta-headquartered South Eastern Railway (SER), said that Ranchi’s inclusion, along with Howrah, for development in the first phase spoke of the state capital’s growing importance.

“Lots of things are happening for last two years. Also, Ranchi is emerging as a cosmopolitan town and most importantly is a state capital. So, it has been selected,” he said.

Therefore, Ranchi station would soon see a number of passenger-friendly measures like digital signage, escalators/elevators, self-ticketing counters, executive lounges, luggage screening machines, walkways, holding areas, distinctive roofing and flooring, free and paid WiFi.

“It’s an innovative plan devised by Railway Board through PPP model by leveraging the real estate available at railway stations. The entire programme will provide 2,200 acres of prime land to private developers for a 45-year lease period,” he said adding that the commercial potential of vacant railway land at/near stations would be leveraged.