0 Kiran Malhotra Asked: July 13, 2019In: Commerce Describe the role of Indian railways in the movement of ICD/container traffic 0 International Marketing Logistics 1 Answer Voted Oldest Recent Best Answer admin Added an answer on July 13, 2019 at 11:51 pm “Among various modes of inland transportation in the organized sector rail transport constitutes the most important element of the transportation network in India.” Indian railways is the largest railway network in Asia and second largest in the world. They are the main arteries of inland transport in India. Freight Traffic: Railways are the most important means of transport amongst all other inland means of transport in India. There has been considerable growth in freight traffic over the years. More than 90 per cent of major products like fertilizers, coal, iron-ore, foodgrain, cement and POL products are transported by railways. These are mainly low value, low rated, bulk commodities important for industrial and mass consumption. Freight traffic can be categorized as follows with respect to Indian Railways: Bulk Commodities: These include commodities like coal, ore, fertilizers for industrial consumption and food grains, edible salt; etc., for mass consumption. These generate the highest revenue earnings. General/other Goods: These are semi-finished/processed/finished items of high value as compared to bulk commodities. Containerized Cargo: This is two types: Domestic Container Services: For inter-nodal transport of cargo (4.5 to 5 tones) ISO Container Services: For multi-modal transport (between gateway ports and inland locations) Export-import Traffic The major items of export transported by railways include ores (iron, manganese), sugar, foodgrain, coal, barytes; etc. Imported items like POL, fertilizers, edible oils, newsprint are transported by railways from gateway ports to hinterland. The Government of India had set-up CONCOR (Container Corporation of India Limited) in 1988, as a PSU under Ministry of Railways to improve freight services. CONCOR has set-up CFS (Container Freight Stations) and ICD (Inland Container Depots) at several locations for looking into the movement of ISO containers to and fro hinterland. ICDs act as collection and distribution centres for movement of ISO containers. Projections of Railways Revenue Earning Freight Traffic: The freight traffic revenue earnings projected for end of 2000 AD is 660 million tonnes. Bulk commodities are expected to continue, to contribute major revenue shares. There has been rise in domestic and ISO container traffic due to rising demand for movement of ‘general cargo’ in containers and is expected to keep an upward trend for coming years. Modernization Programme: As a service organization, Indian railways operates on commercial lines to develop and serve the transport needs of economy. Indian railways has introduced rolling stock capacity expansion and worked for augmentation of lines to increase the capacity of railways. Introduction of electric-engines, electrification of routes, introduction of Box N wagons, new coaches, FOIS (Freight Operation Information System), automated freight booking are some of the measures taken for modernization of existing system of railways. Customer oriented services like QTS (Quick Time Services), Speed Link Express Trains for movement of goods among metros (Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai) have been introduced to arrest traffic diversion to roads. Introduction of road/truck-trailers units to piggy back on wagons. ‘Liner specials’ for movement of containers between ports and ICDs. The investment for development of railway operations and infrastructure is huge. The government has resorted to market borrowings to fund its project requirements. Private participation has also been encouraged via schemes like BOLT (Built Own Lease Transfer), OYWS (Own Your Wagon Scheme); etc. Some other Important Observations The role of Indian railways in exports is limited to transport of bulk commodities like ores, coal, fertilizers; etc. Despite the establishment of ICDs and CFSs there has been rather limited movement of export cargo. Merchants are reluctant to move general cargo by train due to differential treatment to export cargo and movement of other traffic within the country. There are several factors behind limited use of railways in transportation of goods – lack of cargo safety, personalized services, schedule adherence and specialized wagons. Besides perennial shortage, operational problems like derailing and detaching of wagons; etc., thwart the commercial growth of railways. Freight policy regarding general merchandise is not favourable for export community. The policy of full rake cargo requires loading of wagons or rail at large to its maximum capacity. This is not favourable for small exporters as more than often the cargo is Less than Wagon Load (LWL). -8 Reply Share Share Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp Leave an answerLeave an answerCancel reply Featured image Select file Browse Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.