Railway Ministry wants you to name country's first bullet train

Railway Ministry wants you to name country's first bullet train

By: || Updated: 01 Jul 2015 03:43 AM
New Delhi: The baby hasn't arrived yet, but the rush to name it has begun.


The railway ministry wants the public to suggest names for India's first high-speed bullet train proposed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.


Officials said railway employees asked to suggest a " desi" name came up with suggestions like "Pushpak", "Teevra" and "Garud", among others, none of which pleased minister Suresh Prabhu.


"The minister now wants the exercise to be extended across the country. We plan to invite the public to christen the new train," a source close to Prabhu said. "Bullet trains in other countries have native names and we want to follow suit."


The Japanese call their high-speed train network Shinkansen; China's fastest train is known as Shanghai Maglev and the French call theirs TGV (Train Grande Vitesse).


Not everybody, though, is convinced about the economic viability of the train project.


The Japan International Cooperation Agency, the consultant hired to prepare a feasibility report on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad corridor, one of the high-speed corridors the government is considering besides Delhi-Chennai, has just presented its draft report. It estimated that Rs 98,000 crore would be required for the 500km stretch where trains could run at a maximum speed of 350kmph, an official said.


"It seems ridiculous to even think of such a plan in a sector struggling to provide even the most basic facilities and service to about 10 million passengers every day, among whom 95 per cent travel without reservations," the official said.

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