Global tender for rails soon: Piyush Goyal


Railway minister Piyush Goyal on Thursday said the ministry will “very soon” float a global tender to procure rails. He was speaking at the World Economic Forum (WEF) here.

“I have diverted all available tracks to track renewal so that we can make the existing tracks safer. We are looking to go in for global procurement of rail tracks…this will help fast track the doubling of lines and new projects,” Goyal said.

FE had earlier reported that owing to shortage of rail required for new, doubling and maintenance of tracks, the transporter was mulling to float a global tender. At present, only Steel Authority of India (SAIL) supplies tracks to the railways as per a memorandum of understanding. However, SAIL has committed to supply 11.45 lakh tonne rails for the year 2017-18, leaving a deficit of about 3.14 lakh tonne.

The development comes in the aftermath of a spate of accidents claiming multiple lives. The cause of the accidents have mostly been identified as lack of track maintenance.

“There is no limit to safety expenditure. Safety will be the priority for Indian Railways. I have also categorised pedestrian foot-over bridges, platforms, entry and exit points as safety items. I have turned around 100 year old tradition which used to consider all of this as amenities,” said Goyal.

SOURCE: Financial Express

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