The Indian Railways has commissioned 22 Gati Shakti cargo terminals, Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw informed the Parliament on Wednesday (7 December).
Replying to a query in the Lok Sabha, the Minister said such terminals are being developed under ‘Gati-Shakti Multi-Modal Cargo Terminal’ (GCT) policy.
Railways will develop 100 such GCT terminals in the next three years, i.e., 2022-23, 2023-24 and 2024-25.
According to the details provided, while 125 applications for development of such terminals have been received, in-principal approvals have been granted for 79 GCTs.
GCT Policy 2021
In order to boost investment from industry in development of additional terminals for handling rail cargos, a new ‘Gati-Shakti Multi-Modal Cargo Terminal’ (GCT) policy was launched on 15 December 2021.
The key features of these terminals are a simplified application and approval process, removal of departmental charges and no land license fees on the railway land used for connectivity.
All types of commodities including coal and coke can be transported under GCTs.
The GCTs are being developed by private players, and can be developed on non-Railway land or fully or partially on Railway land.
For GCTs to be developed on non-Railway land, the operators will identify the location and will construct the terminal after obtaining necessary approval.
For GCTs to be developed either fully or partially on Railway land, the land parcels will be identified by Railway and the operator for construction and operation of Terminal will be selected through open tendering process.
Indian Railways’ first GCT Terminal under the new policy was commissioned in Asansol Division of Eastern Railway in March 2022.
Under it, a private siding of Maithan Power Limited at Thaparnagar was commissioned. This siding handles 120 inward coal rakes per month and 02 to 04 outward rakes of Fly Ash.