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Over 840 Railway Projects Delayed By an Average of 36 Months: Report

A report on Hindu Businessline says that the delay results in an anticipated completion cost which is over 18.5% higher than the original cost. 
Representative image of railway tracks. Photo: Flickr/Sjensen~ (CC BY 2.0 DEED)

New Delhi: As many as 848 railway projects, each costing Rs 150 crore or more, are delayed by an average of over 36 months, a report on the Hindu Businessline has revealed.

A report notes that our of the 1,820 projects being monitored “56 are ahead of schedule, 618 are on schedule, 431 projects reported cost overruns, and 268 projects reported both time and cost overruns concerning their original project implementation schedules.”

The report says that the average overrun for the 848 delayed projects is 36.59 months, resulting in an anticipated completion cost which is over 18.5% higher than the original cost.

The report arrives at these figures on the basis of a flash report prepared by the government’s Infrastructure and Project Monitoring Division.

The report cites the example of the Lalitpur-Satna-Rewa-Singrauli rail line project which is expected to see a delay of over 16 years, and the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla project which has recorded a delay of 20 years and 15 months. The latter, it notes, is in a region fraught with militancy.

Railway delays continue to plague India. Last year, the New Indian Express reported that the number of delayed projects related to infrastructure development in the railways had increased from 56 in 2022 to 98 in 2023.

Among 24 infrastructure sectors, railways ranks second in terms of the highest number of projects delayed. Road transport and highways sector stands first, that report has noted.

Last year, the government had said in the Rajya Sabha that delays in more than 800 government projects led to cost overruns of Rs 4.5 trillion as of December 2022. Business Standard had reported on this reply, noting that the government had planned 1,438 projects with an original cost of Rs 20.4 trillion. Their cost has increased to Rs 24.9 trillion as of December 2022.

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