The world’s second-biggest Operation Control Centre for goods trains, built in India by the Dedicated Freight Corridor Corporation of India (DFCCIL) is ready to begin operations, and is likely to be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the end of this month, a senior company official said on Thursday.
The centre, built at Prayagraj in Uttar Pradesh, will be the ‘nerve-centre’ of the over 1,800 km-long eastern dedicated freight corridor, the corporation’s MD Anurag Sachan said on Thursday.
The control centre has a theater which measures 1560 sq m, with a video wall of more than 90 m and will be used as a one-stop shop for controlling and monitoring rail systems, including train operations and the power supply system.
The Dedicated Freight Corridor, touted as one of the biggest infrastructure projects in the country, is a 3,360 km stretch consisting of the Eastern and Western corridors. The Eastern corridor, which is being funded by the World Bank, will run from Ludhiana in Punjab to Dankuni near Kolkata, traversing Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Jharkhand.
Mr. Sachan said that the Western corridor will have a similar operation control system at Ahmedabad.
For the Eastern corridor, targeted to be completed by December 2021, The World Bank loan stands at about $1.86 billion.
The MD added that once operational, the freight corridor will help decongest the existing Indian Railway network, while also helping increase the average speed of goods trains to 70 kmph, from the existing 25 kmph.
‘It will connect the existing ports and industrial areas for faster movement of goods… and will help increase the rail share in freight transportation from the existing 30% to 45%,” Mr. Sachan said.
(The writer is in Prayagraj at the invitation of the World Bank)