The central government has sought technical bids for passenger train operations by private companies, offering 109 pairs of routes for such operations, CNBC-TV18 reported on Thursday.
It expects an investment of Rs 30,000 crore by the private sector in the operations.
The Railways last week formally kickstarted its plans to allow private entities to operate passenger trains on its network by inviting request for qualifications (RFQ) for participation on 109 pairs of routes through 151 modern trains, the national transporter said.
This is the first initiative for private investment for running passenger trains on the Indian Railways network. It began last year with the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) introducing the Lucknow-Delhi Tejas Express.
"The objective of this initiative is to introduce modern technology rolling stock with reduced maintenance, reduced transit time, boost job creation, provide enhanced safety, provide world-class travel experience to passengers," the Railways said.