The project is coming again to activate the inactive demo
600 crore was spent to buy demo trains from China. For the next few days, the operating expenses could not be raised. After seven years, the demos became obsolete. Now the railway authority has started to take up the repair project of that demo train again. However, many of the railway policy makers are still skeptical about how long this train will run at the cost of repairs, whether it will be worth running the demo or not.
In this situation, this Thursday morning, the secretary of the Ministry of Railways. A meeting was called under the chairmanship of Humayun Kabir. There will be a ‘power point’ presentation by the Railways on the repair of demo trains. Sources said the short, medium and long-term action plan in the presentation will mention the target of repairing all demos by December next year.
20 sets of demos were purchased from China in 2013. After running for seven years, they became obsolete. Recently, under the initiative of Railway Machinery (Mechanical) Department, the engineer working in various contracting companies. Asaduzzaman repaired a set of demo trains at Parvatipur workshop. On October 9, Railway Minister Nurul Islam inaugurated the trial run of the train.
Railway Minister Prothom Alo said that the demute which has been put into operation will be understood after two months of running with passengers, how sustainable the repair is. In today’s meeting, the cost of repairing the rest, technology and all related issues will be discussed. Then the final decision will be taken.
According to sources in the Ministry of Railways, China’s demo train uses high-tech software-based modules and electronic components. During the repair, all the technical systems and parts of a set of demos have been changed for about one and a half years.
The parts and technology used now are affordable and readily available, say people concerned.
Several responsible officials of the railways say that although it is said to be cost-effective, the amount of money spent on repairing a demo train is not yet known. It is estimated that about 60 lakh rupees have been spent on module modification and technical work. There are additional charges for electricity and other expenses. All in all, repairing each demo can cost over crores of rupees.
According to railway sources, the main objective of the meeting chaired by the railway secretary today is to decide on the repair of the rest of the demo trains. However, some of the people concerned fear that if the ministry approves, the cost may be higher in the end. Because open tender will not be called for this repair system.
All demos repair plan in 15 months
Railway sources said the power point presentation prepared for the meeting said six sets of demos are currently operational. Among them, two sets of demos are active in Dhaka. But the railway management department has confirmed that no demo train has run anywhere in Kamalapur station or Dhaka division in the last one month. Minister inaugurated one train running on Lalmonirhat section after repairs. Apart from this, information has been given that three sets of demos are operational in Chittagong. However, according to the sources of Chittagong division of railways, a demo train got stuck in the middle of the route last month while running on Chittagong-Nazirhat route. The management department does not want to run these trains as they often get stuck in the middle.
Apart from this, although six sets of demos are said to be operational, today’s meeting has been called with all new repair proposals. For this purpose, short, medium and long term action plans have also been given in the power point presentation.
As per the plan, two-three sets of demo trains which can be operated with low maintenance with module changes will be commissioned by next January. Under the medium term plan, five more sets of demo trains can be repaired by next June. In the long term, all remaining demo trains will be repaired by next December.