India’s Ministry of Steel allowed Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd (RVNL) to import 5,000mt of steel from Russia for the 64km metro corridor work in Kolkata. The standing committee, under the domestically-manufactured iron and steel products policy (DMI&SP), allowed RVNL to import 1080 head hardened rails for this strategic project.
Earlier in 2019, RVNL had been given permission to import 6,700mt of the total requirement of 11,800mt that had been proposes in 2018.
RVNL associated this project with Kolkata metro railway. The domestic suppliers failed to meet the amended demand for the rest 5,000mt as the Steel Authority of India Ltd (Sail) is not a producer of that particular rail. RVNL is working with Jindal Steel and Power Ltd for the development order.
Sail said that the rail manufacturing was initiated but had to be paused as the foreign professionals involved in it returned home in April because of India’s COVID-19 situation. They were a part of the head hardened facility at Universal Rail Mill at Bhilai Steel Plant.
The last batch was imported from Russia, which will be continued.
In 2017, the central government set up the DMI&S policy benefitting locally produced iron and steel products instead of imports for any public sector assignments.