INDIA’s Ministry of Railways has awarded Rail India Technical and Economic Service (Rites) turnkey contracts for three new lines, the company’s largest ever order for track work.

The contracts, worth Rs 40.27bn ($US 543.2m), include the Belgaum - Kittur - Dharwad, Shimoga - Shikaripura - Ranebennur and Tumkur - Chitradurga - Devangree lines.

Rites is currently completing track-doubling on the Gooty - Dharmavaram line, and the third-track project on the 140km Annupur - Pendra Road line, which are nearing completion.

“We are happy to have secured Rites’ highest-ever order,” says Rites chairman and managing director, Mr Suresh Kumar. “This new order is testament to our project delivery capabilities and expertise in undertaking mega infrastructure projects. It also demonstrates our efforts to consolidate our order book amid the challenging business environment.”