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German study: Chennai-Mysuru in two-and-half hours by rail is feasible

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on November 22, 2018 Published on November 22, 2018

$16-b project will be mostly elevated, reducing land-use

A high-speed train link from Mysuru to Chennai via Bengaluru is physically, economically and financially viable, finds a study funded by Germany.

India has maintained that the project is viable “physically” as most of it is planned along the existing rail network. The project is expected to cost $16 billion with a broad-gauge rail link and the investments will be recouped in 25 years.

The study envisages covering 435 km in 2 hours and 35 minutes. “Most of the project will be elevated, like a metro, which will low land-use,” said Martin Ney, German Ambassador to India, on Thursday.

“The $16 billion can be re-couped in 25 years, as per the study,” said Ney. “There is a scope to attract the air passengers between the cities on to the train,” said Ashwini Lohani, Chairman, Railway Board.

Lohani said the project is feasible physically, given the low land acquisition requirement, adding that India needs to further study the financial viability.

Economic benefits

“The study envisages most of the users will be from flight or air-conditioned first train passengers... and most of the earnings will be from fare.” Like all high-speed projects, the study expects 4-6 per cent return. However, it expects that “the economic benefits will be enormous,” said Sushant Mishra, Principal Executive Director, Railway Board.

The German studying looked at use of standard and broad gauge, and using the trains for ferrying both passengers and cargo to shore up earnings and lower the unit cost.

 

“There has to be government guarantee for funding,” Markus Schubert, Managing Director, Intraplan Consult GmbH, told BusinessLine.

Intraplan Consult did the study with other firms for the German Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure. Intraplan’s clients include the German Railways (Deutsche Bahn), Lufthansa, and the EU Commission for Mobility and Transport.

Published on November 22, 2018
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