The Shinde-Fadnavis government has granted all necessary approvals to expedite the development of the Rs 1.1 lakh crore Mumbai-Ahmedabad Bullet Train project. Following the state cabinet meeting on Thursday, Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis stated, “Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Thursday gave all clearances for the Mumbai-Ahmedabad Bullet Train project.”
The train will travel through 12 stations in Maharashtra and Gujarat – Surat, Vadodara, Anand, Ahmedabad, Sabarmati, Bilimora, Bharuch, Mumbai, Thane, Virar, Boisar, and Vapi – in just over two hours. Surat will be India’s first station to open between the Ahmedabad-Mumbai Bullet Train route (MAHSR).
The announcement by the state government comes after several reports indicated that the change of government in Maharashtra may hasten the bullet train project, with railway officials expecting a land acquisition file stuck on the state’s chief minister’s desk to be moved now, a petrol pump to be relocated to make way for a tunnel, and a back-and-forth over payment for “prime land” to be resolved.
Last month, Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw stated that the bullet train fare will be kept at the same level as the First AC train. He did, however, state that no final decision on the fare has been made, but that it will be affordable to the general public.
The minister made the reference to First AC for this, so if the bullet train fare is based on that, it is not very much. Vaishnaw also stated that the fare will be less than that of a flight and that the facilities will be adequate. Finally, he clarified that the actual fare would be determined after the project was completed.