India has sought China’s assistance, to speed up the Bengaluru-Chennai railway corridor to 150 kms per hour, at the Strategic Economic Dialogue (SED) held between the two countries, in Beijing, NITI Aayog’s vice-chairman Rajiv Kumar said, on April 15, 2018. The SED was held between delegations headed by Kumar and He Lifeng, the chairman of China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).
The proposal was made, for increasing the speed of the corridor to 150 kms per hour. India previously made a proposal to China, for the redevelopment of the Agra and Jhansi railway stations. This proposal was emphasised again at the SED, officials said. The Chinese side will respond after considering the proposals, they said. Kumar said it was pointed out to the Chinese side that the railway station development plan is a big one, involving about 600 of them. They can bid for any of them, he said.
However, there was no discussion in the just concluded SED, about the collaboration to build high-speed trains by China in India, he said. China has been expressing interest to take up high-speed train corridors in India and began conducting a feasibility study for New Delhi and Chennai high-speed train corridor. The first high-speed train corridor in India, between Mumbai and Ahmedabad, has been bagged by Japan. China has the world’s longest high-speed rail network, with 22,000 kms within the country linking various top cities.