N. Srinivas, a IRTS officer (1989) in his presentation at Eastern Railway headquarters, showed how the dedicated freight corridor (DFC) will be a game changer both in boosting regional economy, making the entire operation climate friendly by saving 457 million tonnes of CO2, and by facilitating a quantum jump in faster transit of goods from major ports to industrial hubs
In Eastern Dedicated Freight Corridor (EDFC), four sections namely Khurja – Bhaupur (351 km), Bhimsen – Chunar (327 km), Pt Deen Dayal Upadhyay Jn – Sonnagar (137) & Khurja – Dadri (46 km) – a total of 861 km have already been commissioned.
There has been a great impact of DFC as loading organizations like CONCOR and other big cement houses are expected to execute more loading. Initiatives like installation of Solar Photovoltaic Panels on vacant land pockets along DFC tracks and others are being taken.
The business development plan through DFC envisages many other strategies like Development of small cargo business and attracting unconventional freight traffic including modal shift from road to rail through innovative products using RO-RO/ToT model. Besides, DFC has advantages of unused line capacity, high speed and lower operating cost.
The USP of DFC for increasing the freight business are capacity, speed & quality of service. IT packaging, first mile/last mile service, aggregation of e-commerce firms, business generation by incentives and encouraging local merchants for aggregating local produce for rail dispatches from nearby DFCCIL stations are aimed to bring revenue even from non-conventional streams. Besides, non-fare revenues from advertising rights at Flyovers, RoBs, RuBs, station buildings/structures and Dark Fibre Monetisation have come into existence. There has been renewable energy development in the Land bank & building roofs also.
Besides, the DFC is also using Dedicated Freight Information System (DFIS) which is an in-house developed information system. This application has several models and key performance indicators over WDFC and EDFC monitored through DFIS. The DFIS have the facilities for Live train running details, Digital daily MIS reports, Paperless station management, unusual incidents reporting and impact analysis, Digitalization of important Forms & Authorities, Cadre Management (PME and training details), Business Development Data, analysis and planning & Details of private sidings, Business Development Reports, Loading/Unloading reports and analysis & other important links and works.
DFIS can access actual Freight trains running from COA application of IR (through API) and on the basis of algorithms embedded in DFIS the Paths of freight trains shall be predicted. On the basis of expected arrival time at Crew changing point, crew arrangement shall be triggered by DFIS in CMS. Similarly unusually related with railway assets such as loco, wagon, crew etc shall be pushed into ICMS for proper monitoring of asset performance.