The Indian Railways (IR) is over 150 years old and it is among the world’s largest rail networks. India’s railway network is recognized as one of the largest railway systems in the world under single management. The railways carry over one million metric tons of freight and transport over 10 million passengers a day (of which over 5 million are in Mumbai’s suburban network).
The Government of India has focused on investing in railway infrastructure by making investor-friendly policies. It has moved quickly to enable Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in railways to improve infrastructure for freight and high-speed trains. As per Union Budget 2020-21, Ministry of Railways has been allocated Rs 72,216 crore (US$ 10.33 billion).
Dedicated Freight Corridor Corp. of India Ltd (DFCCIL), is already building the first two freight corridors—Eastern Freight Corridor from Ludhiana to Dankuni (1,856km) and Western Freight Corridor from Dadri to Jawaharlal Nehru Port (1,504km).
The Government of India is going to come up with a ‘National Rail Plan’ which will enable the country to integrate its rail network with other modes of transport and develop a multi-modal transportation network.
The Government of India has signed an agreement with the Government of Japan under which Japan will help India in the implementation of the Mumbai-Ahmedabad high-speed rail corridor along with financial assistance that would cover 81 per cent of the total project cost.