India to manufacture rail wheels and export Vande Bharat rakes: A leap towards becoming a global rail manufacturing hub

In a landmark announcement that heralds a new era for the Indian Railways, Shri Ashwini Vaishnaw, during the auspicious inauguration of Qualcomm’s Chennai Design Center located in Ramanujan IT City, unveiled ambitious plans for the manufacturing of rail wheels through a forging process in Tamil Nadu and the production of Standard Gauge Vande Bharat rakes for export purposes by the Integral Coach Factory (ICF).

Announcements Related to Railways:

Shri Ashwini Vaishnaw announced that wheels using a forging process will be manufactured in Tamil nadu and the construction work has already started and production will commence in 16-18 months. This manufacturing unit in Gummidipoondi, Tamil Nadu will have a huge production capacity of 2.5 lakhs per year.

Of which, 80000 will be consumed in India and remaining 1.7 lakhs will be exported. Minister pointed out that we have been importers of forged wheels for the last 60-70 years and now with this plant being set up, India will become an exporter of forged wheels.


  • The Minister announced that Integral Coach Factory (ICF), Chennai will now develop standard gauge Vande Bharat as it is standard gauge which is used in Railway across the world.
  • Presently, Broad gauge Vande Bharat is being manufactured in ICF for use in the Indian Railway network.
  • The Minister pointed out that if we have to export Vande bharat rakes 5 years from now we have to start the process of designing as the process of designing, testing, getting national and international approval and manufacturing is a lengthy process.
  • The Minister emphasised that this will add to the export potential of ICF in Chennai, Tamil Nadu.


These announcements by Shri Ashwini Vaishnaw underline India’s commitment to innovation and self-reliance in the railway sector. By establishing advanced manufacturing capabilities for rail wheels and pioneering the export of Vande Bharat rakes, India is set to redefine its role in the global rail industry. These initiatives not only contribute to the nation’s economic growth but also exemplify India’s technological advancements and engineering prowess on the world stage.

Source: Southern Railway – Press Release | Images Credit: MoR