The Indian Railways Organization of Alternate Fuel (IROAF), a separate organization working in the field of green fuels for transportation that had recently requested bids for hydrogen fuel cell-based technology for trains, has been shut down by the Railway Ministry under Ashwani Vaishnaw.
According to an order published on Tuesday, the “Ministry of Railways has decided to close down the Indian Railways Organization for Alternate Fuels” with effect from September 7, 2021.
IROAF’s ongoing initiatives and contracts, according to a ministry spokesman, would not be affected in any way. “It’s just an administrative change. Projects will be completed as usual, according to the spokeswoman.
The work of IROAF will be transferred to Northern Railways and the Railway Board, according to the decree.
IROAF, which had previously experimented with bio-diesel, CNG-fueled engines, and other alternatives to diesel, was traditionally populated and driven by railway mechanical experts. It was also working on solar-powered trains in concert with the NDA government’s plans to reduce carbon emissions by 2022 by implementing renewable energy.
“With the exception of a few modest projects and showpiece installations, Indian Railways has not aligned itself with the 2022 targets. “Railways is doing very little on its own to contribute to the Government of India’s agenda,” according to the IROAF website. “IR’s actions thus far have not been commensurate with the amount of energy it consumes or the power it has as the world’s single largest importer of petroleum and electricity.”
The abrupt closure of the organization, which was based in East Delhi’s Laxmi Nagar, has alarmed some members of the Railway bureaucracy, with concerns raised about the future of other organizations such as the Central Organisation for Modernisation of Workshops, which was established in 1979 for specialized procurement.
The Railway Board will take over the solar power rolling stock and the IROAF’s Alternate Fuel Electrical Directorate. Northern Railway will handle the company’s current tenders, according to the ruling.