L&T Infrastructure Development Projects Ltd., GMR Highways Ltd., IRCTC Ltd. and Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd. are among the 15 companies that have submitted applications to run private trains in Asia’s oldest rail network.
Spanish train maker Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles, IRB Infra, Arvind Aviation, Welspun Enterprises Ltd., Gateway Rail Freight Ltd., Cube Highways and Infrastructure III Pvt., are the other bidders that have filed an application for running private trains, the Railway Ministry said in a statement on Oct. 7.
The final submission comes after two pre-bid meetings that took place in the last three months to provide clarification to the bidders. Nearly 23 firms had shown interest at the second pre-bid meeting.
Indian Railways plans to run as many as 151 private trains—a plan that’s estimated to draw investments worth Rs 30,000 crore. The private trains will run on 140 routes in 12 clusters across the country.
The ministry will now evaluate the applications and issue requests for proposals by November, the statement said.
The ministry aims to close the bidding process by the end of this financial year, and the first set of 12 trains is expected to roll out by FY23.