State-owned steel maker Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Ltd (RINL) is aiming to produce 55,000 wheels in the current financial year to meet the demand from Indian Railways, its Chairman and Managing Director Atul Bhatt said.
Visakhapatnam-based RINL has set up a forged wheel plant at Lalganj, in Uttar Pradesh at an estimated cost of Rs 2,350-crore with a capacity to manufacture one lakh forged wheels per annum.
“RINL supplied 2,465 Loco wheels and 2,639 LHB wheels to Railways in FY23. Preliminary Acceptance Certificate (PAC) has been issued for the plant and very soon production will be ramped up to 55,000 wheels in the current fiscal to meet the demand of Railways,” he told news agency PTI.
The steel maker started supplying wheels in December 2021 when the first consignment of 51 loco wheels was flagged off from its Rae Bareli unit in Uttar Pradesh to the Railways.
The targeted 50 per cent utilisation of the plant will significantly reduce the dependence on imports and help the national transporter to source the Made in India wheels of better quality compared to imported wheels, Bhatt claimed.
The CMD further said “the plant is one of the most modern plants in the world and first of its kind in India with state of the art technology and highest level of sophistication and automation. The forged wheels produced here can meet the requirement of high speed trains that run at a speed of 200 kilometers per hour.” There is a potential to double the annual capacity of the plant to 2 lakh wheels with addition of few facilities to meet the domestic as well as the demand in the international markets, he said.
RINL, under the Ministry of Steel, produces special steel, including wire rod coils, rounds, billets of different grades and dimensions. It is the first shore-based integrated steel plant in the country.
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