For the 3,300-km Dedicated Freight Corridor (DFC) project, Indian and global construction companies are vying for around Rs 12,000 crore worth of civil works for two stretches. Among these are not only the Tatas, Essar and IVRCL Infrastructures Projects Ltd, but also Chinese, Russian and Spanish firms. The eastern corridor of the DFC is from Ludhiana to Dankuni (West Bengal). The western one is from Dadri, close to Delhi, till Navi Mumbai.
China Railway First Group, a part of the Chinese government-owned China Railway Engineering Corporation, in consortium with Soma, Tata-Aldesa, IVRCL-KMB, Essar-Patel-BSCPL are among the 10 companies that have bid to build the Khurja-Bhaupur (343 km) stretch on the eastern one.
Bids have also been asked for the Rewari-Palanpur (640 km) stretch on the western one. The contractor for the World Bank-funded eastern corridor is likely to be announced by the end of the month.
The upgraded design features of the DFC are meant to sustain 1.5 km of train length and a 100 kmph speed, with a load of 15,000 tonne. The World Bank approved a loan of $975 million in October 2011 for the first phase of the corridor.
Of the 12 companies technically qualified for the Khurja-Kanpur section, 10 gave financial bids, while Lanco Infratech and Hindustan Construction decided to skip the race. Two Japanese-led consortiums — Sojitz Corporation-Larsen & Toubro and Mitsui-IRCON Leighton — are expected to give financial bids on January 21 for the Rewari-Palanpur section of the western corridor, sources said.