Preparing for 160kph (100mph) on classic routes of Indian Railways

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AU Lifetime Supporter
Gathering Team Member
Aug 24, 2003
Space Coast, Florida, Area code 3-2-1
The classic New Delhi - Howrah (Kolkata) (via Grand Chord) and New Delhi Mumbai (via Kota) routes have been selected for upgrade for general 160kph operation. Indian Railways standards require fencing of tracks for operation at 160kph (100mph). They discovered that they have zillions of discarded life expired concrete ties lying around that are hard to recycle, but can be used as is to build border fences,

Once cleared for 160kph operations in about two years, the overnight premium expresses between New Delhi and these two cities, distance in each cases a bit over 900miles (think New York - Chicago-like) will be scheduled to operate in 12 hours with all existing stops. They will typically depart and arrive at 7pm and 7am respectively in both directions, with on board dinner and breakfast service at your seat.

In order to improve train acceleration/deceleration performance, the premium trains have already started operating with two 6,200HP WAP7HS 25kV 50Hz AC drive locomotives popularly known as White Stallions because of their all white livery, top and tail for 22 car trains. For now it is just helping them with better time keeping.

Wouldn't it be nice if we could do such meaningful incremental improvement in US in addition to grand extremely expensive plans for "real high speed" etc.?
Last edited:


Feb 23, 2014
Ithaca, NY
Maybe we will again. By my historical analysis, the major obstacle has been a combination of private track ownership (the US is almost unique in having a significant amount of private track ownership) and governments with a bias towards roads & airports and against train tracks (this is somewhat more common).