An Indian Railways-Japan International Cooperation Agency feasibility study has concluded that the Mumbai-Ahmedabad 505-km high-speed rail corridor will cost an estimated Rs 98,000 crore. Minister of State for Railways, Manoj Sinha, stated this in a written reply during question hour in Parliament on Wednesday.
Though there is no visibility on when the project will start, it is estimated that trains on this corridor run at a top speed of 320 kmph, reducing commute time between the two cities to less than two hours from the current seven.
The Japanese government has offered a package proposal for the corridor, which involves technical, operation & maintenance (O&M), and financial assistance to the tune of 81 per cent of the project cost, which will be disbursed as a loan. The interest and other terms have not been finalised, a government statement said.
The ambitious project requires 11 new tunnels, including one under the sea near Mumbai.
It is expected to start at Bandra Kurla Complex, while the Ahmedabad point has not been decided.
In September, China had won the contract to assess the feasibility of a 1200-km high-speed rail corridor between Delhi and Mumbai, a project that is expected to cost at least twice as much. No loan has been offered so far on the Delhi-Mumbai corridor.
These two projects are part of the ‘Diamond Quadrilateral’ of high speed trains, with over 10,000 km of tracks connecting Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata.
Recently, Japan agreed to fund Rs 1,069 crore for the Chennai Metro Rail and Rs 4,410 crore for Ahmedabad Metro Rail, adding momentum to the bilateral ties between India and Japan.
“With overall consensus and popular support for greater cooperation between India and Japan, the partnership is poised for a great future,” said a government statement.