New Delhi. India's first bullet train project to be started between Ahmedabad-Mumbai could be delayed by 5 years. It is being said that the project is being delayed due to rising costs and cancellation of the tender. Apart from this, many companies in Japan are also not showing interest in the project. It is estimated that the Railways will now be able to complete this project by October 2028. The work of this dream project of the first bullet train was to be completed in December 2023. The National High-Speed Rail Corporation (NHSRCL) is working on this bullet train project.

Many bottlenecks in the project

The English newspaper Indian Express has quoted sources claiming that there are many problems in this project. In this project, a 21-km line is to be laid underground, including a 7-kilometer long tunnel under the sea near Mumbai. The tender was withdrawn at the beginning of this year, but no Japanese company was involved in the tender process. Apart from this, in 11 tenders, companies bid for 90 percent more costly than anticipated. In such a situation, it had to be canceled at the moment. Not only this, but it is also being said that many advanced boring machines are needed for laying a 21 km underground line. In such a situation, it will take at least 60 months to complete this work.

According to the information received, Japan has not received a stake for the 21-km underground stretch considered to be the most important section of this project. Of this 21 km underground stretch, a 7 km section will pass through the sea near Mumbai. The deal has not been finalized yet.

Land acquisition work stuck!

Apart from this, various newspaper has also claimed that the land acquisition for this project has not been completed. For this, 430 hectares of land are needed for this, but so far only 100 hectares of land have been available to the government. On the other hand, due to the cooperation of the state government in Gujarat, the land acquisition work is going on fast and it is expected that by the end of the year it will get 1000 hectares of land to the government. A spokesperson of NHSRCL says that till now they have got land for 345 km. This entire line is 508 km long.

Land acquisition work stuck!

Plans to start from August 2022

The bullet train project was about to start in August 2022. Railways officially say that the work will be completed according to the old timeline. To complete this project, the Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA) is giving 80 percent loan of Rs 1 lakh crore for 20 years. This loan is given at an interest of 0.1%.

Why the project is getting delayed, what are the obstacles in the way?

  1. It is reported that 21 km underground section of the Bullet Train Corridor, including 7 km undersea section, showed no interest from Japan and was done for it earlier this year. The attempts failed. 
  1. Apart from this, the 11 tenders for the project which were to be taken by Japanese companies, the proposed prices were 90 percent higher than the estimate. India has refused to accept such a huge cost. 
  1. Another issue is the acquisition of rolling stock. According to Japan, Kawasaki and Hitachi are the only companies capable of supplying the train. However, it was later found that these two companies could bid together, creating a single-tender situation. It was left for India to take this decision at a higher level. 
  1. It was believed that a joint committee meeting between India and Japan, to discuss all the obstacles coming to the project, has been postponed due to coronavirus this year. In such a situation, the picture will be revealed only after the meeting of this committee. 
  1. Sources said that the announcement of his departure from Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe due to health reasons will not affect the bullet train project. However, Abe's improved personal relationship with Prime Minister Modi would have a positive impact in furthering the project.
  1. According to the feasibility study, the work for the bullet train project was to start in December 2017, but so far only 100 hectares of the 430 hectares of land in Maharashtra has been acquired, while in Gujarat this year with the help of the state government The acquisition of one thousand hectares will be completed by the end of the year.

The delay in the completion of the bullet train project is yet another failure of the Narendra Modi government and disappointed India,

About The Author

Chetan Sharma is an Indian fact-checker and news writer, writing news for Ayupp since 2014.

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