Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Bullet trains to run in India

Prime Minister Modi and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe have agreed for the Bullet train to run between Mumbai and Ahmadabad. The joint study  by India and Japan has already progressed and is in its final stages. However there are still many policy matters to be ironed out. The decision to go ahead with Japan instead of China has lot of merits. Basically China is a new comer to this area with little field experience.

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My first time on the bullet train (Shinkansen) from Tokyo to Osaka was a thrill ride that included the view of Fuji from within the 'Vista' car. The curtsy of the railway staff bowled me over completely. The inside cabin cleanliness was 'out of the world' for one flying out of Calcutta. Over the years the image has not changed. Lots of local systems have the same level of service even today.

 I wholeheartedly endorse this project even though it is really making the wealthy more comfortable. Is it going to be inexpensive for the regular folks? I hope it will spin off a development spree in other regions.

There are huge cultural differences between the two countries. Just because it is running like clock work in Japan does not mean it will be a similar experience in India. Indians will be able to cover this gap by doing some learning on existing systems by paying attention to:

Customer care
Maintenance of toilets
Clean catering

Cleanliness repeated for emphasis.

Although I share and agree with most of the comments here, I really believe this is a good thing. The amount involved is quite large while there are pressing problems of greater importance like,

Clean Toilets
Urban garbage removal
Traffic Congestion
More effective schooling
Physical education at schools

Here is a video

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