NEW DELHI: Railways will go ahead with the proposal for running trains at a speed of 200 kms an hour on the Delhi-Chandigarh route with French technical help to reduce the travelling time to about two hours.
SNCF – the French railways – will submit the execution strategy and implementation model with detailed cost of the semi-high speed project involving upgradation of the 245 km route.
Currently, Shatabdi Express covers the 245 km distance in about three hours 30 minutes traveling at a maximum speed of 110 kmph.
It was decided at a high-level delegation meeting of SNCF and Indian Railways to opt for speed of 200 km/hr and French railways was asked to prepare the draft document for it, said a senior Railway Ministry official involved with the semi-high speed project.
Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu today met a high-level French delegation and discussed the possibility of running semi-high speed trains on the Delhi-Chandigarh sector.
It was agreed to explore the upgradation of the existing track to enable 200 km/hr speed run on Chandigarh route with French help, said the official.
The French team will submit the final report with details of cost analysis by October.
According to a rough estimate, it is likely to cost about Rs 46 lakh per kilometre for running trains at 200 km/hr, which includes rolling stock, and signal and track upgradation on the Chandigarh corridor.