UK Railway delegation to meet R Velu on rail projects

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Kolkata, Apr 22 (UNI) Kolkata, Apr 22 (UNI) A high-level delegation from the UK will meet Minister of State for Railways R Velu here tomorrow to discuss on the avenues for further development and growth of the sector.

Speaking at a seminar organised jointly by the Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and UK Trade and Investment today British Deputy High Commissioner to Eastern India Simon Wilson said, ''The Indian Railways has put up a remarkable performance both in freight and passenger segments. Despite being a large PSE, it has made profits as well as fulfilled its social objectives by taking prudent business decisions, employing new technology and being innovative.'' He said the Indian Railways was being used as a case study in many leading business schools worldwide.

He also informed that the delegation will present various projects in the meeting with Mr Velu, including ports connectivity, dedicated freight corridors, suburban and mass transport systems, which could play a major role in sustaining India's economic growth.

''The private sector as well as world-renowned railway experts from the UK are actively joining hands with the Indian Railways to provide state-of-the-art facilities, equipment, technology and top of the range training for its staff,'' Mr Wilson added.

Talking on the occassion, former ICC president J P Chowdhary said the delegation will present various project proposals to improve the service, efficiency as well as annual turnover of the Indian Railways.

''With the growth in Indian economy, the increasing need of the Indian Railways in the form of infrastucture would largely be met by the international players,'' Mr Chowdhary said.

He also informed that the Indian Railways is the second largest system in the world under a single management, with an extensive network of 62,725 kms, 21.5 per cent of which is electrified.

The Indian Railways ranks second in the world after China in terms of freight intensity, track to land ratio, wagons to track ratios, passengers and cargo.

''It is also soliciting private sector participation in freight movement through a Build Own Operate Transfer (BOOT) scheme and Own Your Wagon Scheme (OYWS),'' Mr Chowdhary informed.

UNI DPM PP RN1654

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