85% of wagons allocated for coal transportation
The Indian Railways has allocated 85% of its open wagons in the country to transport coal in order to cater to the high demand from states, senior officials familiar with the strategy told HT on Wednesday.
According to one of the officials, of the 131,403 open wagons owned by the railways, 113,880 have been put into service for coal transport. A coal train usually gets up to 84 wagons.
“On a daily basis, railways is loading around 28,470 wagons with coal to meet the demand from power plants,” said the official, asking not to be named.
“Senior officials of the railways, coal and power ministries have come up with 18 key points to speed up the transportation of coal. The ministries meet twice a week to discuss updates. Moreover, the three ministries have prepared an online portal to get faster updates,” the official added. According to this official, the railways is running three to five trains together at 122 locations across Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Odisha, Chhattisgarh.Railways ministry data shows that nearly 95% of coal transported by them comes from Coal India’s reserves, while the remaining is imported.
The national transporter has already increased the operating duration of rakes by 2,500km. “We have increased the break power certificates (BPC) of our rakes. This implies that our carrying capacity (CC) rakes that were sent to the garage after completion of every 7,500 km, will now be sent to the garage only after running 10,000 km. This will lead to an increase in loading and carrying coal,” a senior railways official had told HT earlier this month. Also, the national transporter has spent more than ₹150 crore to repair at least 2,000 damaged wagons over the last four months to increase the coal movement. According to a third official, the railways set up five new repair sites to repair these wagons.