Karnataka is among the three worst states in the country with regard to electrification of railway lines, behind only Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh. According to the railway ministry, only 19 of existing lines in Karnataka are electrified, while it’s 18% in Gujarat and 13% in Himachal Pradesh. Karnataka, which has a total network of 3,281km, has just 632km electrified, way behind other southern states.
With a total rail network of 297km, Himachal Pradesh has 40km electrified, while Gujarat has managed to electrify only 970km of its 5,259km network. Kerala has the most electrified lines in the country (83%), followed by Odisha (78%), Andhra Pradesh (76%), New Delhi (75%) and Chhattisgarh (72). Nationally, only 30,012km (45%) of the total 66,687km had been electrified till April this year.
Indian Railways recently decided to electrify its entire network in four years at an estimated cost of Rs 35,000 crore, which is expected to save Rs 10,500 crore a year in the fuel bill. The move to phase out diesel locomotives is also expected to reduce greenhouse gas emission.
Union minister of state of railways Rajen Gohain on Friday said in the Rajya Sabha that they have identified 13,675km of railway lines for electrification, which includes 1,051km in Karnataka, which will be included in the 2018-19 budget.
“Indian railways has prepared an action plan to electrify 38,000 km broad gauge lines across the country in five years. It has also decided to increase the pace of electrification from the present average of 1,700km per annum to 4,000km a year, which will be further increased to 6000km a year in 2018-19,” he said in a written statement.