Railways to convert diesel engines into electric: Goyal

Piyush Goyal said that India is the first country in the world to experiment converting diesel engines to electric

Union Minister of Commerce and Industry & Railways Piyush Goyal speaks in the Rajya Sabha during the ongoing Winter Session of Parliament, in New Delhi, Friday, Nov. 29, 2019. (PTI Photo)

The entire rail network will be electrified in India which is the only country in the globe that is experimenting to convert diesel engines into electric, Railways Minister Piyush Goyal said in Rajya Sabha on Friday.

This is being done in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's commitment towards environment protection, Goyal said during Question Hour.

"Till now six old diesel locomotives have been converted into three twin electric locomotives at Diesel Locomotive Works, Varanasi which is a production unit of Indian Railways," Goyal said.

These conversions being prototype and since a lot of existing material from discarded locomotives were reused, it is not possible to ascertain the exact cost at this stage, he said.

The Minister said: "These converted prototype locomotives are under extensive field tests and trials. The number of diesel locomotives is to be decided based upon the performance of the converted prototype locomotives."

In reply to a supplementary, the minister also said that there is no requirement for conversion of metre gauge and narrow gauge into electric as the government is closing these barring a few places in view of environment or scenic beauty.

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