On Monday 11th February 2013 Shri Narendra Modi delivered the keynote address at the second High Speed Rail seminar organized in India by Japan. The seminar was held in Ahmedabad. The Chief Minister pointed out that the seriousness to implement the high-speed rail should reflect in the railway budget and provisions for the same should be there to provide an impetus to the ambitious project.
"In the forthcoming budget of Centre, I expect that some seriousness should reflect on this (HSR)...some provision should be there for HSR in the budget and then things would start connecting” the Chief Minister said. He also opined that in the 21st century high-speed transposition is an integral part of the development process. In his address he also talked about the initiatives taken by the Gujarat Government such as Ahmedabad-Gandhinagar Metro Rail Project, high speed railway till Dholera SIR, Mass Rapid Transport System, Janmarg BRTS and said that for these multipurpose transport projects the Gujarat Government launched MATA (Multi Modal Affordable Transport Authority).
"If the Government of India takes an initiative, Gujarat government shall never be behind. The state will not shy from making its contribution to this prestigious project and shall provide all sort of financial and logistics support to it,” he affirmed.
Shri Modi stated that out of the HSR corridors identified in India, Ahmedabad-Mumbai-Pune was the most economically viable one and in the backdrop of Gujarat's key role in Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC), it would be prudent to speed up its implementation.
“Since 1980, HSR has remained confined to thought level only, now it should speed up. We all know that Western Railway (WR) is the most revenue earning region for Indian Railways, and within WR the maximum income comes from Ahmedabad," Mr. Modi told the gathering. On the other hand, Shri Modi affirmed that China and Japan have adopted high-speed railways a lot earlier and at a much quicker pace.
The second seminar on HSR in India was organised by the Ministry of Land Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT), Japan, in association with Ministry of Railways, Government of Gujarat and CII. Indian Railways had set up a High Speed Rail Corporation of India in July 2012 for the implementation of HSR in India.
"Around 15 countries in the world have done major work on HSR and each one of them has evolved a system, technology and financial models in its own way. So after studying each one of them we can learn a lot and eventually develop our own model, which can be sustainable," Shri Modi said.
Commenting on the strong relationship between Gujarat and Japan the Chief Minister affirmed, " In the last three Vibrant Gujarat Summits, Japan has been an active participant as partner country with Gujarat.”
During the meeting various senior officials of the Road, Building, Industry, Urban Development Departments were present on the occasion.