Modi, Abe get India’s first bullet train going as ties deepen


New Delhi (AFP) – As India’s premier Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe prepare to break ground on the country’s first bullet train project Thursday, experts say the collaboration could signal a massive leap for its overburdened and deadly railways.

India’s colonial-era rail network carries some 22 million passengers daily, making it one of the busiest in the world. But it is also among the most dangerous.

A government report published in 2012 said almost 15,000 people were killed every year in rail accidents, describing the deaths as an annual “massacre” due mainly to poor safety standards.

Modi has pledged to invest billions of dollars to modernise the country’s crumbling railway infrastructure, which is plagued by delays, and the bullet train was one of his key election promises ahead of a landslide victory in 2014.

As New Delhi and Tokyo seek to forge closer ties…



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