Chairman of the Board and CEO of ČD, Pavel Krtek, accompanied by a member of the Board of ČD, Roman Šterba, met the Indian Minister of Railways, Suresh Prabhu. The meeting took place on 21 October 2016 at the very end of the several days’ visit of this distinguished guest in the Czech Republic. The meeting was also attended by State Secretary of the Ministry of Railways of India, Manoj Sinha, Indian Ambassador to the Czech Republic, Krishan Kumar, Head of Department of International Affairs of ČD, Jiří Havlíček, and CEO of Association of Czech Railway Industry (ACRI), Marie Vopálenska.
Minister Prabhu took a lively interest mainly in a system of compensation for losses from the operation of railway passenger transport, the use of EU funds for investment development of the national carrier. There was also a discussion about the ambitions of ČD regarding the cross-border traffic performance within Central Europe, the construction of new high-speed lines, and last but not least about the railway accident rate, which is an important theme for Indian Railways. With considerable interest, he also listened to the history of transformation of Czech Railways from 1988 to the present day. Minister Prabhu informed the meeting about the strategic plans of Indian Railways, such as the construction of new high-speed lines, the completion of additional tracks within the existing conventional lines, the electrification and decarbonisation, the purchase of new bogie freight wagons and other topics. Indian Railways are planning to invest 135 billion dollars in the development over the next five years.
Indian Railways (IR) represent a gigantic system serving a country with a population of 1.3 billion. The length of the railway network exceeds 66 thousand km, of which 22.2 thousand km is electrified. The number of employees exceeds an impressive 1.3 million. There are 10,773 locomotives for hauling of 52,000 passenger coaches and 254,000 freight cars deployed to operation. Besides, there is more than 10 000 diesel and electric units put into operation. Passenger trains cover a distance of 759 million km per year and freight trains 401 million km per year. IR trains annually transport 8.2 billion passengers with an average transport distance of 139.5 km. Freight transport annually handles 1.1 billion tonnes with an average transport distance of 620 km.
(Source: Czech Railways)