New Delhi: In a bid to run trains faster, Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu on Thursday said that Indian Railways will electrify 24,000 km of railway tracks in next five years.
“We have set a target of electrification of about 24,000 km in the next five years and the electrification will also reduce the energy bill,” Prabhu said at a global seminar on Mission Electrification and Decarbonisation of Indian Railways here.
“With the expansion of electrification of majority of railway tracks, railways will run trains in a faster and cleaner manner,” he said.
He also said that Railways have tied up with three PSUs – IRCON, RITES and Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd (PGCIL) — to increase the pace of route electrification to achieve 90 per cent electrification.
“Increase in the pace of electrification will reduce its fuel bill by Rs 10,000 crore annually as against the business as usual approach, which is the second highest expenses of the Railways after the salaries and pension of its employees,” the Railways Minister added.
Prabhu also said that with the electrification of the railways, consumption of imported oil will come down, thereby reducing burden on government exchequer.
“To make energy sources greener to feed railways, we shall have solar panels on rooftops as well as on vacant land,” he said stressing on the green source of energy.
He also said that Railways will change significantly with the initiatives to produce greener energy and by electrifying the railway completely.
The Railways Minister also launched a mobile app named RAILSAVER to achieve 15 to 20 per cent reduction in energy use.