India launches first bullet train project

India launches first bullet train project
This file photo taken on November 12, 2016 shows India"s Prime Minister Narendra Modi (2nd R) and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe (R) shaking hands in front of a Shinkansen train during their inspection of a bullet train manufacturing plant in Kobe, Hyogo prefectureImage copyrightAFP
Image caption The deal was one of a raft of agreements signed between two leaders in 2015

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has launched work for India’s first high-speed train in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s native state of Gujarat on Thursday.

Mostly funded by a $17bn (£12.78bn) loan from Japan, the bullet train will run between Ahmedabad city and Mumbai.

It is expected to cut the 500km (310 miles) journey time down to three hours from the current eight.

Mr Abe is making a two-day visit to India, a close ally of Japan.

India’s railway system carries more than 22 million passengers a day and much of the equipment is out of date, leading to frequent accidents and chronic delays.

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