The 59th Network Planning Group (NPG) meeting was held under the chairpersonship of Special Secretary (Logistics), Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), Smt. Sumita Dawra in New Delhi.
During the meeting, a discussion was held on High Traffic Density Routes (HTDR) of the Ministry of Railways (MoR). The program involves increasing the capacity of high-traffic density routes with a total length of 16,600 km; augmenting and four laning of trunk routes & doubling of feeder routes. It is expected to decongest the network and increase speed. The MoR has identified around 200 projects under this program.
Key Points of the Meeting:
- The aspect of integrating railways with other modes of transportation to promote multi-modal connectivity of infrastructure in the country was discussed.
- The program’s importance was also recognized by NPG members in terms of likely employment generation and overall importance to the Indian logistics ecosystem.
- Its potential to provide a sustainable transportation option to the industrial sector was also accepted.
- This program is an important step towards creating desired incremental network capacity, which will result in decongestion, create capacity for running additional trains on railway routes and improve average speeds.
- The application of the Area Development approach shall create adequate infrastructure for catalysing socio-economic development in a sustainable manner and enhance first and last-mile connectivity.
- This is especially important as the HTDR project will touch more than 6000 villages in 210 Districts enroute.
- Special Secretary, DPIIT acknowledged the importance of modernization of railways in the Country to make it future-ready.
- She mentioned that by taking measures like automated signalling, yard-remodelling, terminal upgradation, and removing bottlenecks, Indian Railways can increase its capacity substantially.
- Further, it will decongest the current network, leading to faster cargo and passenger movement.
The prospective use of the PM Gati Shakti NMP portal in planning multimodal projects, integrating with plans and vision of the Ministry of Road Transport & Highways (Bharatmala 2047) and the Ministry of Shipping & Waterways (Sagarmala 2030), while also establishing multimodal hubs and enhancing social infrastructure connectivity, signifies a pivotal step toward lowering logistics costs and curbing greenhouse gas emissions. This is in line with India’s objective to attain zero carbon emissions.
Source: PIB- Press Release | Image Credit (representational): South Central Railway