When will India’s first bullet train project between Ahmedabad-Mumbai be completed? NHSRCL answers

When will India’s first bullet train project be completed? The National High-Speed Rail Corporation Limited (NHSRCL), responsible for constructing the 508 km-long bullet train corridor between Ahmedabad and Mumbai, has stated in an RTI reply that the completion date for the entire project can only be determined after all work tenders have been awarded.
However, a senior official associated with the project has affirmed that the bullet train project is progressing well, with significant advancements in the construction of viaducts, piers, and foundations.
“A total of 35 km of the viaduct has been handed over for track works. 100 per cent tenders for civil works for the entire corridor and tenders for track works in Gujarat have been awarded. The trial runs between Surat and Billimora in Gujarat will start in 2026,” the officer told PTI.
According to NHSRCL sources quoted in the report, the first civil contract for the Maharashtra portion was awarded in March 2023, as a significant portion of the land required for the project in Maharashtra was not available.
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Chandra Shekhar Gaur, a Madhya Pradesh-based individual, submitted an RTI application seeking information on whether the NHSRCL could provide a final completion date for the entire project.
In response to the RTI query, the NHSRCL stated, “Completion date for Mumbai-Ahmedabad High Speed Rail Project (MAHSRP) can be assessed after award of all tenders/packages.”
The project, which was launched in 2017, was initially scheduled to be completed by December 2023. However, land acquisition issues and the Covid pandemic have significantly delayed its progress.
The Ministry of Railways has officially declared that the first phase of the project, spanning 50 kilometers between Surat and Bilimora, will be finished by August 2026. In January 2024, it was also announced that the land acquisition for the project was complete.
In response to an RTI application, the NHSRCL stated that the rail tracks have not been laid yet. However, they added that by April 6, 2024, “a total length of 157 km viaduct has been completed”. On March 28, 2024, Union Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw provided an update on the progress of the corridor via X, stating that 295.5 km of pier work and 153 km of viaduct have been completed.
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An expert associated with the project explained, “Piers are big cylindrical columns erected on the ground. Girders are placed on piers to make a viaduct. On the viaduct, a reinforced concrete track bed is placed. Then comes the precast track slab on it. The rails are fitted on the track slab with the help of fastening devices.”
The expert further elaborated, “Out of a total length of 508 km of the project, 465 km are on viaducts, 9,82 kms on bridges, 5,22 kms pass through mountain tunnels and 21km is underground with 7 km will be under the sea.”
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The NHSRCL states that the bullet train will operate at a maximum speed of 320 km/h, covering the 508 km distance in 2 hours and 58 minutes, including stoppage time at all 10 stations. The train will commence its journey from Mumbai and conclude at Sabarmati, halting at Thane, Virar, Boisar, Vapi, Bilimora, Surat, Bharuch, Vadodara, Anand, and Ahmedabad.
A project expert mentioned, “Out of 508 km, 352 km falls in Gujarat and Dadar & Nagar Haveli and the remaining 156 km is in Maharashtra. There are a total of 12 stations out of which 8 are in Gujarat and 4 in Maharashtra.” The estimated cost of the project is 1,08,000 crore.

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