Railway ministry is expanding the scope of
private sector participation in running of trains by permitting them to lay a
railway line and run trains. The railways at present allow private parties to
run freight trains on its tracks but its operation is left to the Railways
according to ministry sources.
rationale behind the scheme is to set off a competition in running of trains
between various private sector players.
Private companies can lay their own lines and can either themselves run
trains or have other third party operators. They will have to pay a small
charge to railways for permitting them to operate the system.
The official said that the idea was still in the conceptualization stage and
the rail board was working on the feasibility.
The scheme is to open up the area to both freight and passenger trains.
The railways are circumspect about the scheme for fear of opposition from the
currently allows private parties to run freight trains on its tracks, though operations
of the trains are still in hands of railways. The national transporter also
runs a few luxury tourist trains in joint venture with state governments.