Modi Bullet Train
Source: Business Standard

Mumbai Ahmedabad corridor, introduced for a feasibility study in 2009-10 is racing at its full pace to meet the deadline of August 2022 The 1.1 lakh crore Rupee project, expected to have passenger capacity between 1300 and 1600 passengers started its groundwork in December 2017. The Trains will be designed to operate at a maximum speed of 350Kmph but with precautionary measures, the operational speed will be limited to the only 320Kmph. With the introduction of the Bullet train, the time taken to travel between Mumbai and Ahmedabad will reduce from 7 hours to just 2 hours and 8 minutes at its maximum speed. Most of the train’s path will be made elevated, except for a 21 km underground tunnel between Thane and Virar, including a 7 km undersea path.

The new system may take Indian Railways to a whole new level but in accordance to India economy, is it the right time to build the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train project?

In order to build the project, the Indian Government has taken a 50-year loan of 88,087 crore Rupee from Japan at an interest of 0.1%. The loan covers around 81% of the total cost while the rest of the amount will be borne by the state governments of Maharashtra and Gujrat. Ever since its inception, the project has faced many protests from farmers over land acquisition. The local political parties like NCP, MNS, Shiv Sena, and Congress have also joined the farmers and are not leaving any chance to protest. Till now 5 petitions have already been signed in the Gujrat High court against the project and in order to avoid the land acquisition, Indian Government has decided to run the train on an elevated path for most of its journey which has increased the cost of the project by 1000 crore Rupee. The current scenario doesn’t seem to be in favor but project under-construction cannot be put on hold either.

So again its exam time for ruling government either stick to its ache din motto or make a void in the economic zone or putting again the farmers live in a grey one.