On November 14, 2019, To deliver the 10 locomotives in FY (fiscal year) 2019-20, Indian Railways & French multinational company Alstom have entered into procurement cum maintenance agreement with Bihar based Madhepura Electric Locomotive Pvt. Ltd. (MELPL), where the India’s most powerful electric locomotives are being manufactured.
In 2015, the project worth 3.5 billion Euro order for supplying 800 high-powered electric locomotives to the Indian Railways was handed over to Alstom.This is for the 1st time in the world by any railway, a locomotive with so much horsepower is being tested on a network of large lines.Key Points:
i.Under the largest FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) project , Indian Railways tied up to bring about massive changes in the scenario of heavy cargo transportation in India.
ii.Background: Alstom introduced this new twin Bo-Bo design Locomotive with 22.5 T (Tonnes) axle load upgradable to 25Tonnes with design speed of 120 kmph will be powered by 12000HP in March 2018.
Based on the results of its testing, Alstom has designed the entire locomotive with a new compartment (bogie). The Research Design and Standards Organization (RDSO) inspected the new design of the locomotive at the Madhepura factory and then approved its departure from the factory.
iii.Alstom ,under its plan will supply 10 locomotives in FY 2019-20, 90 locomotives in FY 2020-21 and then 100 locomotives every year after March 2021.
iv.Benefits: It will help the movement of coal-powered trains to the dedicated freight corridor. The success of this project will give a big boost to the ‘Make in India’ initiative of the Indian government. This will lead to faster development of auxiliary units for locomotive parts.
With 100 % electrification, the new locomotive will not only reduce the operating cost of the railways, but will also free the Indian Railways from congestion.
About Indian Railways:
Founded -16 April 1853
Headquarters -New Delhi
Union minister– Piyush Goyal
Headquarters- Saint-Ouen, France
Chairman and CEO -Henri Poupart-Lafarge