MEMU coach factory to come up in Rajasthan
Railways have decided to join hands with state-owned BHEL for setting up Mainline Electric Multiple Unit (MEMU) coach factory in Rajasthan to cater to the growing demand for more local and suburban trains.
The MEMU trains equipped with higher acceleration capacity are expected to move faster on electrified tracks and would benefit daily commuters.
Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal is expected to announce the setting up of the modern MEMU coach factory in Rajasthan in his maiden Rail Budget 2013-14 on February 26.While Rajasthan will provide about 200 acres of land,
BHEL will set up the Rs 1000 crore factory in a joint venture with railways, railway sources said, adding "modalities of the project are being worked out."
Railways will sign MoU with BHEL and Rajasthan government for setting up the coach factory.
MEMU trains are required for faster connectivity with suburban areas. Nine MEMU coaches comprise one MEMU train. The Rajasthan factory is expected to manufacture about 400 MEMU coaches in a year, the sources said.
MEMU trains have engines on both sides so they can operate in both directions quickly. Each MEMU train with nine coaches can carry 1800 passengers as each coach has seating capacity of 100 passengers and equal number of people can stand as there is space for standing passenger as well.
BHEL is already into manufacturing of diesel and electric locomotives at its plant in Jhansi and has an annual capacity to make around 50 engines.
Despite cash crunch, substantial funds are likely to be announced in the Rail Budget 2013-14 for long pending projects. Currently, there are about 347 rail projects worth Rs 1.47 lakh crores pending and railways is planning to complete some of these works in the next fiscal.
"Certain pending projects involving laying of new lines as last-mile connectivity are being identified and we want to complete them," they said.