Kolkata: Railway Wagon project at Kulti in West Bengal, which was initiated in 2011, is set to become operational soon.
The Railways has fostered a Joint Venture initiative between two public sector undertakings viz. SAIL and RITES and Railwayd will have an indirect participation.
The wagon factory will be a joint venture between Steel Authority of India (SAIL) and RITES Ltd and is named as SAIL-RITES Bengal Wagon Industries Pvt Ltd (SRBWIPL).
The project is likely to be commissioned very shortly,” Hemant Kumar, Railway Board member, said at an interactive session with Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu hosted by MCC Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The foundation stone for the project and work on the factory had began in 2011.
SAIL RITES Bengal Wagon Industry Private Limited (SRBWIPL) is a Joint Venture Company (JVC) of Steel Authority of India Ltd. (SAIL) and RITES Limited (RITES), each holding equal equity stake of 50%. SAIL is a Maharatna PSU and a Government Company under the administrative control of the Ministry of Steel. RITES, a Mini Ratna PSU is a 100% Government Company under the administrative control of the Ministry of Railways. Therefore, SRBWIPL is 100% owned by Govt. of India (Ministry of Steel and Ministry of Railways).
SRBWIPL would primarily manufacture wagons including high end specialized wagons for Indian Railways and other domestic and overseas customers. It is also geared up to undertake other business activities like wagon prototyping, rehabilitation of wagons, manufacture of fabricated items / components for railway vehicles etc.
Indian Railways has signed agreements worth Rs.25bn for the SAIL-RITES Bengal Wagon Industry joint venture to supply 1200 stainless steel wagons and refurbish 300 existing wagons every year for the next 10 years. The two agreements will enable production to start shortly at a Rs.1.2bn factory at Kulti in West Bengal which has been built by the SRBWIPL 50:50 joint venture of the Ministry of Railways’ RITES consultancy and the Ministry of Steel’s SAIL.
SAIL provided the land and RITES was responsible for constructing the factory and procuring ‘state-of-the-art’ manufacturing equipment. SRBWIPL is expected to employ between 400 and 500 people, and support the development of ancillary industries in the area.
Speaking at the signing ceremony on November 24, 2015, Suresh Prabhu said the assured take-off agreements were ‘a very significant landmark’ for the two ministries. He said the factory would support the government’s ‘Make in India’ initiative, and he hoped it would become a centre of excellence for the development and manufacturing of special purpose wagons for the domestic and international markets. IR should also consider using aluminium wagons, Prabhu added on the occasion.