Indian Railways News: Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnav said on Friday that the Railways has floated a tender for setting up a wheel factory, where at least 80,000 wheels will be manufactured every year. Also, a blueprint has been prepared to become an exporter of Rail Wheels. Vaishnav told the media that for the first time the Railways has invited private companies to set up rail wheel plants.
Wheels for high speed trains and passenger coaches will be made in this ‘Make in India’ plant. An assured purchase of Rs 600 crore will be made for the 80,000 wheels manufactured here every year. He said that this is the first time that the Railways has floated a tender inviting the private sector for the manufacture of wheels.
2 lakh wheels needed every year
Let us tell you that Indian Railways needs two lakh wheels every year. According to this plan, the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL), where one lakh wheels will be made. While the remaining one lakh wheels will be made in this new ‘Make in India’ plant. Vaishnav told the media here that this tender will be given on the condition that the rail wheels made in this plant will also be exported and this will be exported to the European market. A provision has also been made in the tender that the plant will be set up within 18 months. Currently, the railways largely imports wheels from Ukraine, Germany and the Czech Republic, but the Russian invasion of Ukraine has stalled the purchase of wheels and forced the railways to look for alternatives.
cost on import of a wheel
The Railway Minister said that today this tender has been issued. We have been importing wheels from European countries since 1960. Now we have decided to manufacture and export them. He said that this decision has been taken after a thorough technical analysis and discussion on points like availability of raw material required for this in the country. Railway officials estimated that the domestic manufacturing of rail wheels is expected to save the railways a lot, as it has to pay Rs 70,000 on import of a wheel.
China got the contract
Vaishnav said that India had imported high-capacity rails (rails) for the corridor and bullet train made for freight. But now there is going to be an agreement to make them in the country itself. He said that under this Make in India agreement, high capacity rails will be made within the country. In May, the Railways had awarded a contract of Rs 170 crore to a Chinese company to supply 39,000 wheels for Vande Bharat trains.
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