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Amrit Bharat Stations Scheme

  • 09 Aug 2023
  • 5 min read

Source: PIB

Why in News?

Recently, the Indian Prime Minister has laid the foundation stone for the Redevelopment of 508 railway stations across India as a part of Amrit Bharat Stations Scheme, spreading across 27 states and union territories.

  • The extensive redevelopment project, estimated to cost more than RS 24,470 crores, aims to transform railway stations into modern, well-equipped hubs.

What is the Amrit Bharat Stations Scheme?

  • About:
    • The Amrit Bharat Station Scheme aims to redevelop 1309 stations nationwide.
    • The redevelopment will provide modern passenger amenities along with ensuring well-designed traffic circulation, inter-modal integration, and signage for the guidance of passengers.
    • The Scheme was launched in February 2023 by the Ministry of Railways.
  • Station-wise Plans:
    • The station buildings' designs will be inspired by local culture, heritage, and architecture.
      • For instance, the Jaipur Railway Station will feature elements resembling the Hawa Mahal and Amer Fort from Rajasthan.
  • Integrated Approach to Urban Development:
    • The redevelopment is planned with a holistic approach to urban development, treating the stations as "City Centres."
    • This approach aims to integrate both sides of the city and create well-designed traffic circulation, inter-modal connectivity, and clear signage for passengers' guidance.
  • Benefits:
    • Passenger Amenities: The redeveloped stations will feature modern passenger amenities, including upgraded waiting rooms, improved seating on platforms, and free Wi-Fi connectivity.
    • Local Involvement: The redevelopment plans also incorporate the local community's input, aiming to represent the essence of the region in the station's design and amenities.
    • Green Energy and Emission Reduction: LED lights will be installed in around 70,000 coaches and the substantial increase in the number of bio-toilets in trains, contributing to environmental sustainability.
    • Net Zero Emissions Goal: There is an ambitious goal for India's railway network, aiming for Net-Zero Emissions by 2030. The emphasis on green building standards and energy-efficient practices aligns with the broader vision of environmental sustainability.

What are a Few Key Facts About Indian Railways?

  • 169 Years of Heritage:
    • The Indian Railways was established on 16th April 1853. The inaugural passenger train covered a 34-kilometer route between Mumbai's Bori Bandar and Thane.
  • Unique Mascot:
    • The Indian Railways boasts its own mascot, a 'Shubhankar named 'Bholu,' created by the National Institute of Design in 2002. Bholu is an elephant dressed as a railway guard, introduced on the railways' 150th anniversary.
  • World's 4th Largest Rail Network:
    • The Indian Railways ranks as the world's fourth-largest railway network, encompassing a track length of 67,368 km. Only the US, China, and Russia have larger networks. It's also the world's second-largest network managed under a single administration, spanning 115,000 km.
  • UNESCO World Heritage Sites:
    • The Indian Railways takes pride in owning four UNESCO-recognized world heritage sites,
      • Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus in Mumbai, Nilgiri Mountain Railway, and Kalka Shimla Railway.
  • Longest Platform:
    • Hubli Junction's Platform number 1, also known as Shree Siddharoodha Swamiji Hubballi Junction in Karnataka, holds the record for the world's longest railway platform at 1,505 meters.
  • Longest and Shortest Train Rides:
    • The longest train ride in India is the Vivek Express, traveling from Kanyakumari to Dibrugarh, covering a distance of 4,189 kilometers with 56 stops in 82 hours and 30 minutes.
    • The shortest train ride is just 3 kilometers, running between Nagpur and Ajni.
  • World's Highest Rail Bridge:
    • India is home to the Chenab Rail Bridge, the world's highest railway bridge, located in Dharot, Jammu, and Kashmir.
  • Nagpur's Diamond Crossing:
    • Nagpur, Maharashtra, hosts the famous Diamond Crossing, where two railway tracks form a square-like diamond shape, with two lines going North-South and two lines going East-West.
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