DB Starts Operations on India’s Regional Rapid Transit System

Posted: 3 November 2023 | | No comments yet

DB subsidiary, DB International Operations (DBIO), have started operations on India’s first regional rapid transit system.

Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi flags off the priority section of the first RRTS corridor in Delhi-National Capital Region. DB International Operations will be responsible for operations and maintenance. The partnership will focus on knowledge transfer for state-of-the-art technologies ahead of their introduction in Germany.

The priority section of India’s first Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) corridor was commissioned in October in Delhi-National Capital Region. The Hon Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, flagged off the first modern regional trains that entered service on the 17 kilometre long priority section between Sahibabad in Ghaziabad City and Duhai, driven by Indian employees of Deutsche Bahn subsidiary DB International Operations (DB IO).

India’s first Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) has begun operation. The RRTS network being built by the National Capital Region Transport Corporation (NCRTC) will cover 82 kilometres and include 25 stations and two depots connecting Delhi, Ghaziabad, and Meerut once it is fully commissioned by 2025. The service, branded as RAPIDX, is designed to carry around 800,000 passengers a day at full capacity – a similar number to Hamburg’s S-Bahn. The travel speed of the trains is 160 km/h, thereby becoming fastest regional rail system in India. The country is investing around four billion dollars in the project, which is primarily aimed at commuters travelling between the three major cities, each with populations of over one million.

DB International Operations was awarded a 12-year contract for rail operations and maintenance in July 2022, with a further five years option. Following the signing, DB RRTS Operations India Private Limited was established as the operating company for the project.  Since then, the company has been training drivers and station staff, organizing the depots, and drawing up schedules. It has gradually made the trains, stations, and other facilities ready for operation.

“This is a great opportunity to create an Indo-German partnership for green urban mobility,” said Niko Warbanoff, CEO of DB E.C.O. Group, of which DB IO is part. “There is also a lot we can learn about the state-of-the-art technologies in this project ahead of their imminent introduction in Germany.”

“NCRTC has been working persistently for the past 4 years, to make this transformative system a reality,” said Vinay Kumar Singh, Managing Director of NCRTC. “Along with our operation partner DB RRTS India, we are committed to set a new benchmark in providing quality services to our commuters.”

The new regional rapid transit system will be equipped with state-of-the-art technology, including the ETCS (European Train Control System) Level 2/Hybrid Level 3 train control system and automatic train operation. This technology, which uses LTE (Long-Term Evolution) communication, will also be deployed in Germany in the future. The Indian project therefore also promises to bring major benefits for the German rail system through the transfer of technology and knowledge.

DB IO specialises in operating and maintaining rail transport systems and is responsible for DB‘s international operator projects outside Europe.

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