The central government will likely allow private firms to set fares for passengers once they start operating their own train services in India. According to a report by Bloomberg, the central government believes that its decision to allow private players in Indian Railways will bring an investment of around USD 7.5 billion in the next five years.Private players have been given the freedom to fix fares in their own way,” VK Yadav, chairman of Railway Board, was quoted as saying by Bloomberg. “But air-conditioned buses and planes also operate on those routes, and they have to keep that in mind before setting fares,” Yadav told Bloomberg.
The Bloomberg report further claimed that Alstom SA, Bombardier Inc, GMR Infrastructure Ltd and Adani Enterprises Ltd have expressed their interest in these projects.The central government in July had asked private firms in India to submit their interest to run passenger trains over 109 origin-destination routes via 151 trains.The Indian Railways has confirmed that it will have private players for constructing and operating its planned seven new bullet train projects -- Delhi-Varanasi, Mumbai-Nagpur, Delhi-Ahmedabad, Chennai-Mysore, Delhi-Amritsar, Mumbai-Hyderabad, and Varanasi-Howrah. The central government has set a target to run the first bullet train in the country by 2023.