New Delhi: To give a push to green mobility in India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi flagged off the world’s first diesel to the electric locomotive in Varanasi on Tuesday. This is the first time, Indian Railways have has taken such a huge step, the project is in line with Indian Railway’s Mission of 100 per cent electrification and de-carbonization agenda. Speaking at the event, PM Modi highlighted how this new step will pave the way towards a green and cleaner India, he said, “Today, I am honoured to flag off the engine of the train that once used to work on diesel but now has been modified to run on electricity. What’s interesting is the fact that this new engine’s power is equivalent to two diesel run engines. And, I am proud to announce that this work has been done not just in India, but in the world for the first time.”
जो इंजन पहले डीजल से चलता था वह अब बिजली से चला करेगा, नये इंजन की ताकत भी दो पुराने डीजल इंजन से ज्यादा होगी। भारत ही नही, पूरी दुनिया मे भी ऐसा प्रयोग पहले कभी नही हुआ। इस काम ने एक बार फिर दुनिया मे भारतीय वैज्ञानिकों और इंजीनियरों की क्षमता का लोहा मनवाया है: PM @NarendraModi pic.twitter.com/vyd3fWzwvo
— Piyush Goyal (@PiyushGoyal) February 19, 2019
PM Modi also took to Twitter to congratulate India on this achievement, he added,
In Varanasi, flagged off the first ever Diesel to Electric Converted Locomotive. I congratulate the entire team that has worked on this historic accomplishment, which will enhance the efforts of the Railways towards electrification.
In Varanasi, flagged off the first ever Diesel to Electric Converted Locomotive.
I congratulate the entire team that has worked on this historic accomplishment, which will enhance the efforts of the Railways towards electrification. pic.twitter.com/0VmNI6BReF
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) February 19, 2019
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley also congratulated the engineers involved in the project.
Congratulations to our engineers on making world’s first Diesel to Electric Locomotive Engine at DLW, Varanasi, said Mr Jaitley.
Congratulations to our engineers on making world's first Diesel to Electric Locomotive Engine at DLW, Varanasi, UP. The 10K HP locomotive flagged off by PM @narendramodi will boost make in India.
— Arun Jaitley (@arunjaitley) February 19, 2019
The project was kick-started in 2017 by the Diesel Locomotive Works (DLW) in Varanasi and from concept to execution of the conversion of the diesel locomotive to electric was carried out in mere 69 days. The new electric locomotive was dispatched for trials by end of February 2018. When the first prototype was flagged, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal congratulated India on its success by highlighting how the diesel turned electric train will lead India’s green initiative. He said,
In a first of its kind initiative, Railways has converted a Diesel Locomotive to an Electric Engine in a record time of 69 days, almost doubling the engine’s power capacity and helping save crores in rehabilitation while reducing our carbon footprint. DLW Varanasi has converted a WDG3-class 2,600 HP diesel locomotive to an electric locomotive that delivers 5,000 HP, which is 92% more than the older loco.
Keeping the vision of green and new India in mind, DLW has now created a new prototype of electric locomotive converted from diesel locomotive that was flagged by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. According to railway officials, mere Rs 2.5 crore will be spent for conversion of diesel locomotives to electric as compared to the mid-life rehabilitation cost of Rs 5-6 crore.
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