In a bid to achieve a modal share of automobile loading to 20 per cent by the end of 2021-22, and a modal share of 30 per cent by 2023-24, Union Railways and Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal on Saturday met automobile industry leaders to give a boost to automobile loading through Railways.
In a statement, a Railway Ministry spokesperson said that the representatives of Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), Tata Motors, Hyundai Motors, Ford Motors, Mahindra & Mahindra, Honda India, and Maruti Suzuki Ltd, the Automobile Freight Train Operators (AFTOs), Automotive Tyre Manufacturers' Association (ATMA), were all part of the meeting.
The spokesperson said that the industry players lauded the initiative and committed to work in partnership with Railways to facilitate transportation of automobiles through the national transporter. According to the railway ministry, Railways is attaining new heights in transportation of automobiles. It said that the total loading of automobiles through Railways was only 429 rakes in 2013-14, which has increased to 1,595 rakes 2019-20. And in the first six months of the current year, railways has loaded 836 rakes of automobiles against 731 rakes in the previous year.
"Railways is aiming to achieve a modal share of 20 per cent by the end of 2021-22, and a modal share of 30 per cent by 2023-24," the spokesperson said. The official said that the participants in the interaction were informed about the steps taken by Indian Railways to promote loading of automobiles, which has led to this quantum jump - and were asked to bring more loading to Rail.
They were informed about the steps taken to facilitate automobile loading, including haulage charges for BCACBM rakes have not been revised since May 2013, freight for NMGs has not been revised since May 2018, increase in the number of NMG rakes - from 30 (on April 1) to 42, two-destination loading permitted in NMG rakes, export of automobiles is permitted.
The official said that for the export of automobiles, traffic to Bangladesh and Nepal was started in NMG rakes. He also said that Railways opened seven new terminals for automobile loading at Chitpur (ER); Penukonda (SWR); Nasrala (NR); Nautanva (NER) - for traffic to Nepal; Salchapara, Furkating and New Tinsukia (all NFR).
Participants were informed that more terminals are being opened up for automobile traffic as per demands of the industry.