Kerala

Autokast gets on the fast track with Railways’ order

A Casnub bogie built by Autokast.  

Come August 6, a brand new chapter will be added to the industrial development in the State when Autokast Limited, a ferrous foundry manufacturing unit in the public sector in Cherthala, hands over the first Casnub bogie manufactured by it to Indian Railways.

After a series of inspections, the Lucknow-based Research Design and Standards Organisation (RDSO) of the Union Ministry of Railways last month gave its final clearance.

State govt.’s support

K.S. Pradeep Kumar, chairman, Autokast said it had become the first public sector company in the country to manufacture Casnub bogies for Railways. “It is a milestone for Autokast and industrial development of the State. We achieved this by competing against private players. It is the result of hard work of more than three years. The State government’s support in recent years has played a big role in the accomplishment,” Mr. Kumar said.

Autokast, which was accorded a Class ‘A’ Foundry status by the RDSO in 2019, bagged a ‘development order’ in March 2020 for manufacturing five Casnub bogies for goods trains for the Northern Railway at a cost of around ₹2 lakh a bogie. “The first of five Casnub bogies will be dispatched to Amritsar in Punjab by road. It will be flagged off by Industries Minister P. Rajeeve at 5.30 p.m. on Friday. The remaining four bogies will be given before September,” Mr. Kumar said.

The remarkable turnaround of Autokast, which was once listed for privatisation, can be attributed to the previous Left Democratic Front government’s efforts to revive sick public sector undertakings in the State. The government had injected money into Autokast, which helped it modernise the unit.

Upgraded status

By successfully delivering the initial order for Casnub bogies, officials said Autokast’s status had been upgraded from development source to regular source. It has become eligible to participate in Railways’ tenders. Apart from manufacturing Casnub bogies, Autokast recently supplied deck-mounted closed chocks for INS Vikrant, India’s first indigenous aircraft carrier. It has also received an order for supplying brake drums for Maruti Suzuki cars.


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Printable version | Sep 17, 2021 4:58:51 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/autokast-gets-on-the-fast-track-with-railways-order/article35666091.ece

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