The average running speeds of trains on railway systems depend upon various factors, such as, type of track structure, signalling systems, motive power, type of rolling stock, network congestion, etc. Some of the international railway systems, such as the Shinkansen in Japan and the TGV system in France, have dedicated networks of high speed railway lines with maximum speeds over 300 Kmph. The average running speeds of all categories of trains across different railway systems abroad are not compiled. Indian Railways has a heterogeneous system with freight trains and passenger carrying trains being operated on common tracks, with a very high level of capacity utilization. During the financial year 2019-20, the average speed of premium trains (Rajdhani, Shatabdi, Duranto and Vande Bharat) was above 70 kmph, Superfast trains was above 55 kmph, Express services was above 50 kmph and that of freight trains was 24 kmph. However, during the current financial year, i.e. 2020-21, the average speed of freight trains has increased to 46.71 kmph.
With a view to increasing the speeds of trains and ensuring timely running of trains including goods trains, Indian Railways has initiated several measures for upgrading the infrastructure, modernizing the rolling stock and for streamlining operations. The blueprint for increasing the speeds of trains on Indian Railways include the following:
This information was given by the Minister of Railways and Commerce & Industry, Shri Piyush Goyal in a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha today.