The final feasibility report on the dedicated freight corridor (DFC) being carried out by Japanese consultants, will be completed by October this year.
Acording to Japanese land, infrastructure and transport minister Tetsuzo Fuyushiba, who called on railway minister Lalu Prasad, said, ''The feasibility study will be completed by October 2007, and will be a comprehensive one, covering technology and maintenance issues,'' said Fuyushiba.
While appreciating Japan's support for the freight corridor project, the railway minister said that the project would lead to the the Delhi-Mumbai industrial corridor project.
Indian Railways has already set in motion the process of constituting the special purpose vehicle (SPV) - the Dedicated Freight Corridor Corporation of India to implement the project.
The company has been entrusted with the construction of eastern and western corridors at an estimated cost of Rs22,000 crore.
The eastern corridor will run from Ludhiana in Punjab to Sonnagar in Bihar and will be extended to the proposed deep-sea port in Kolkata. The western corridor will start from Jawaharlal Nehru Port in Mumbai and will be routed via Vadodara, Ahmedabad, Palanpur and Rewari to Tuhglakabad (Delhi) and Dadri (Uttar Pradesh).
The two freight corridors were estimated to cost Rs22,000 crore as per a survey in 2005, which now is slated to cost Rs30,000 crore.
Dedicated freight corridors are tracks exclusively meant for super-fast freight trains running at 90-100 km per hour and will be able to take on higher axle load wagon and double stack containers.
This will not only improve the quality of rail freight services and boost the competitive edge of the railways while reducing the cost of rail transportation.
As per the current estimate, work on both the corridors will be completed in about five years after the start of construction of the project.