Larsen & Toubro (L&T) on 16 January said that its construction arm has bagged a 'mega order' to construct 508 route km of high-speed electrification system for the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train project. The company added that the order has been bagged from an authorised Japanese agency.

"The railways strategic business group of L&T Construction has secured a mega contract to ....construct 508 route km of high-speed electrification system works for the Mumbai-Ahmedabad High-Speed Rail (MAHSR) Project, popularly referred to as the bullet train project," the company said in a filing to BSE.

Upon completion, this electrification system will enable trains to travel at speed of up to 320 kilometre per hour.

The company added that this project is being funded by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and is being implemented by an authorised Japanese agency acting for and on behalf of National High Speed Rail Corporation Ltd.

While L&T did not disclose the exact value of the contract, it counts an order as 'mega' when it is valued between ₹10,000-15,000 crore.

Meanwhile, earlier on 11 January, Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw had said that the progress of the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train project is quite satisfactory. The minister, however, refused to give a deadline for the project's completion when asked by reporters.

"We proceed section by section in a linear project. It is a complex project and the work is going on at a very good speed," he said.

"After reviewing the project, I am quite satisfied and impressed with its progress," the minister said.

Out of the total 508-km-long project between Mumbai and Ahmedabad, viaduct has been raised on a length of 272 km. There are eight rivers on the route and bridges have been built over five of them, Vaishnaw said. The minister reiterated that the deadline to complete the 50-km-long section between Surat and Billimora is 2026 and the work is progressing according to the schedule. Vaishnaw said the bullet train corridor will integrate big economic centres such as Mumbai, Thane, Vapi, Surat, Vadodara, Anand and Ahmedabad and is good for the country's economic growth.

The project announced in 2017, the country's first high-speed train corridor between Mumbai and Ahmedabad will see bullet trains running at a speed of 320 kmph. In 2017, the National High Speed Rail Corporation Limited, which is executing the project, had given a deadline of 2022 for completing the whole project, however, the deadline was subsequently extended.

With inputs from PTI