The Integral Coach Factory (ICF) of the Indian Railways has made a ‘Make In India’ manufacturing record by building over 2,239 coaches in the current fiscal year, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said in a recent post on Facebook.
According to the Minister, the factory is now looking at manufacturing a total of 2,500 coaches by the end of the current fiscal year and surpassing the previous best of 2,234 coaches achieved in the fiscal year 2016-17.
According to Goyal, the ICF has nearly tripled the production of Linke Hofmann Busch (LHB) coaches. These coaches are comparatively safer and capable of withstanding accidents with minimum damage. While 400 LHB coaches were manufactured in 2016-17, over 1,100 of these coaches were built in 2017-18.
As the production of LHB coaches is being maximised, the Railways would stop inducting the relatively unsafe ICF coaches by the middle of 2018. ICF coaches currently form two-thirds of its 60,000-strong fleet.
Railways Coach factory in Rae Bareli has proposed manufacturing 5,000 LHB coaches every year, up from 1,000 coaches. With 20,000 LBH coaches currently in use, it would take the Railways around 5 years to replace all ICF coaches.