The Truth Behind Cost Of Thailand’s Bullet Train And Apology By Prashant Bhushan

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It is amazing that how something as good as bullet train can become the centre of scrutiny. Anything and everything is for only scoring political brownie points. It does not matter if it is bullet train or a stampede tragedy, only thing that matters is political upmanship.

Recently, Japan approved Rs. 1.10 lakh crore’s loan to India to start Bullet train between Ahmedabad and Mumbai. A few days later, Thailand approved a project of amount 5.5 billion US dollar to China to start high-speed Bullet train between Bangkok and China.

The cost comparison between these two projects has been widely discussed in India, and many people are still confused about the actual cost of the projects. China received an order from Thailand to export a high-speed bullet train that will connect Bangkok to southern China. The project will be completed by 2021.

Last month, Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe visited India and signed a project in the presence of Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, and they both laid the foundation stone of the Bullet train project in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. This project will be completed by 2022, and its track length is 500 km.

Prashant Bhushan, one of the founders of Aam Aadmi Party completely missed the mark about the cost of the project. He misunderstood and tweeted that, Thailand approved 3000 km bullet train for $5.5 Billion while India approved 500 km bullet train for $17 billion. Not just him, many were confused about the same.

Chief Minister of Delhi and head of Aam Aadmi Party, Arvind Kejriwal retweeted his tweet without knowing the truth. Many people in India have been opposing the decision of bullet train after its approval. But this time, these claims were wrong as Thailand only approved $5.5 billion for the first phase of the project that covers an area of 370 km out of a decided length of 3,000 km.

After realising his mistake, Prashant Bhushan apologised with a tweet that $5.5 billion was for the first phase of 256 km length, as reported by Topyaps. Now, the question still remains what is the total cost of Thailand’s Bullet train project. China had already quoted the cost of $16.09 billion, and Thailand had stated that it was too high. There is no clarity about the final amount of the high-speed bullet train project between Bangkok and China.

So, people drawing parallels without knowing the complete story are merely looking for ammunition to target the government. Was there a need for bullet train or not can be debated, but using false or misinterpreted information to create a fake image of corruption or wrong decision is a wrong trend that has been started.

 

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