Indian Railways is working on a number of strategies to increase its revenue from parcel services, which officials point out has been languishing at ₹2,000 crore.

To this end, the Railways is working on a various strategies, including tying up with e-commerce players, partnering with India Post for a joint parcel product, developing its own portal for parcel booking, as well as manufacturing of LHB compatible parcel vans.

“We are trying to think out of the box in order to generate more revenue from parcel traffic. It has not seen a significant jump in the last few years, despite railways providing faster and cheaper transportation service than that of trucks,” a senior railway official noted.

Transport from Delhi to Hyderabad by truck would take about 50 hours while it can be achieved in about 32 hours by Railways, he pointed out.

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Tie ups with e-comm players, India Post

Earlier this month, Amazon India announced it has further strengthened its operational engagement with the Indian Railways, with more than 325 inter-city transportation lanes for movement of customer packages.

To work with large e-commerce players, the Railways is reviewing guidelines to enable transport of certain commodities.

It has also tied up with India Post for door to door delivery of parcels in March this year.

“The idea is to provide first and last mile connectivity. A pilot project has been initiated on the Surat to Varanasi route and we have identified more sectors,” the official said.

More ways to boost revenue

The Railways is also working on developing its own portal for online booking of parcels through the Parcel Management System, which being developed with CRIS to provide customers first and last mile connectivity.

Meanwhile, the Ministry is also looking at ways to increase parcel rolling stock and how to increase manufacture of LHB compatible parcel vans.

“There is not enough parcel rolling stock. We are trying to see how to increase this,” the official noted.

The Railways has set a target of ₹1,809.53 crore revenue from parcel service in 2022-23