Vishwesh Chaube, Member Engineering, Railway Board, Ministry of Railways on Friday said that start-up companies will also be allowed to participate in railway projects.
Addressing a webinar on ‘Business Continuity Plan for Railway Sector and Path to Recovery Post COVID-19’, organised by the industry chamber FICCI on Friday, Chaube said, “We have allowed the start-up companies to tender in the railway contracts with no earnest money being submitted by them and with no eligibility criteria also.”
Highlighting the impact of COVID-19, Chaube said that soon all zonal offices and Railway Board will work on e-office concept. “Railway board is also shifting to e-office concept and by June all zonal offices will shift to e-office concept,” he added.
Chaube also emphasised that COVID-19 might impact the short-term goals, but Indian Railways is bullish on infrastructure projects and will achieve long-term goals.
He also said that Indian railways is already in the process of redeveloping stations, and 62 stations are being taken up on public-private partnership (PPP) mode including New Delhi and Mumbai Central stations. “Rs 100 billion will be spent in the redevelopment of the stations. Railways is geared up to complete them,” said he said.
Pradeep Kumar, Member Signal & Telecom, Railway Board, Ministry of Railways said that Indian railways will promote Make in India and focus on indigenous products under the Atmanirbhar Bharat programme.
He also stressed upon the need that Indian railways will find new ways to not only improve passenger convenience but also reduce logistic cost. “The main focus of Indian railways will be to reduce the logistic cost to 8 per cent from current 13 per cent by improving asset utilisations and using multimodal transportation.”
Arunendra Kumar, Adviser, FICCI National Committee on Transport Infrastructure & Former Chairman Railway Board and President (Rail and Urban Transportation), JBM Group said that Indian railways has not only met but exceeded the country’s expectation. “The interaction is an eye opener for the industry as it has highlighted many steps taken by Indian Railways to promote the vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat,” he said.
Sandeep Selot, Co-Chairman, FICCI National Committee on Transport Infrastructure & Managing Director, GE Diesel Locomotives Pvt. Ltd said that Indian Railways had played a pivotal role during these unprecedented times by leveraging its resource mobilisation capabilities to cater to completely new requirements.