14 March 2012

Railway Budget Highlights 2012-13

Railway Budget Highlights
  • Introduction of satellite based real time train information system (SIMRAN) to provide train running information to passengers through SMS, internet, etc.
  • Passenger fares increased marginally. The increase will be by 2 paise per km for suburban and ordinary second class; 3 paise per km for mail/express second class; 5 paise per km for sleeper class; 10 paise per km for AC Chair Car, AC 3 tier and First Class; 15 paise per km for AC 2 tier and 30 paise per km for AC I.
  • Minimum fare and platform tickets to cost Rs. 5.
  • 50% concession in fare in AC-2, AC-3, Chair Car & Sleeper classes to patients suffering from ‘Aplastic Anaemia’ and ‘Sickle Cell Anaemia’.
  • Extending the facility of travel by Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains to Arjuna Awardees.
  • SMS on passenger mobile phone in case of e-ticket to be accepted as proof of valid reservation.
  • On board passenger displays indicating next halt station and expected arrival time to be introduced.
  • Introduction of regional cuisine at affordable rates; launching of Book-a-meal scheme to provide multiple choice of meals through SMS or email.
  • Introduction of coin/currency operated ticket vending machines.
  • Upgradation of 929 stations as Adarsh Stations including 84 stations proposed in 2012-13; 490 stations have been completed so far.
  • Specially designed coaches for differently-abled persons to be provided in each Mail/Express trains.
  • Introduction of Rail Bandhu on-board magazines on Rajdhanis, Shatabdis and Duronto trains.
  • Setting up of AC Executive lounges at important stations
  • 75 new Express trains to be introduced.
  • 21 new passenger services, 9 DEMU services and 8 MEMU services to be introduced.
  • Run of 39 trains to be extended
  • Frequency of 23 trains to be increased.
  • 75 additional services to run in Mumbai suburban; 44 new suburban services to be introduced in Kolkata area, 50 new services to be introduced in Kolkata Metro; 18 additional services in Chennai area.
  • 725 km new lines, 700 km doubling, 800 km gauge conversion and 1,100 km electrification targeted in 2012-13.
  • Rs 6,872 cr provided for new lines, Rs 3,393 cr for doubling, Rs 1,950 cr for gauge conversation, Rs 828 cr for electrification
  • Highest ever plan outlay of Rs. 60,100 cr
  • Rae Bareli coach factory manufactured 10 coaches in 2011-12; phase-II of the factory would be commissioned in 2012-13.
  • A wagon factory to be set up at Sitapali (Ganjam District of Odisha)
  • A rail coach factory with the support of Government of Kerala to be set up at Palakkad; two additional new manufacturing units for coaches to be established in the Kutch area in Gujarat and at Kolar in Karnataka with active participation of the State Governments.
  • Setting up of a factory at Shyamnagar in West Bengal to manufacture next generation technology propulsion system for use in high power electric locomotives.
  • Creating Missions as recommended by Pitroda Committee to implement the modernization programme.
  • Setting up of Railway Tariff Regulatory Authority to be considered.
  • New Board Members for Safety/Research and PPP/Marketing to be inducted.
  • Rail-Road Grade Separation Corporation to be set up to eliminate level crossings.
  • Indian Railway Station Development Corporation to be set up to redevelop stations through PPP mode.
  • Logistics Corporation to be set up for development & management of existing railway goods sheds and multi-modal logistics parks.
  • National High Speed Rail Authority to be set-up.
  • Pre-feasibility studies on six high speed corridors already completed; study on Delhi-Jaipur-Ajmer-Jodhpur to be taken up in 2012-13.
  • Introduction of a ‘Green Train’ to run through the pristine forests of North Bengal.
  • Setting up of 200 remote railway stations as ‘green energy stations’ powered entirely by solar energy.
  • Providing solar lighting system at 1,000 manned level crossing gates.
  • 2,500 coaches to be equipped with bio toilets.
  • Setting up of 72 MW capacity windmill plants in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal.
  • Installation of Integrated Security System at all 202 identified stations to be completed in 2012-13.
  • Escorting of trains by RPF/GRP extended to 3,500 trains.
  • Integration of RPF helpline with the All India Passenger Helpline.
  • Setting up of a Railway Safety Authority as a statutory regulatory body as recommended by Kakodkar Committee
  • Three ‘Safety Villages’ to be set up at Bengaluru, Kharagpur and Lucknow for skill development for disaster management.
  • Over one lakh persons to be recruited in 2012-13 – backlog of SC/ST/OBC and other categories to be wiped off.
  • Introduction of a wellness programme for railway staff at their work places.
  • Ensuring proper rest for skilled and technical staff including the running crew.
  • Institution of ‘Rail Khel Ratna’ Award for 10 rail sports-persons every year.
  • New coaching terminal at Naihati, the birth place of Rishi Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay commemorating him on 175th Birth Anniversary.
  • Project to connect Agartala with Akhaura in Bangladesh to be taken up in 2012-13.
  • Freight loading of 1,025 MT targeted; 55 MT more than 2011-12
  • Passenger growth targeted at 5.4 %. 
    Railway budget 2012-13
    Mar 14,  1:59 PM

    The Railway Budget has been presented in the Parliament today.

    No increase in freight rates, moderate hike in passenger fare, introduction of 75 new express trains, construction of new lines in the underdeveloped parts of the country, modernisation of railways, a new body to ensure passenger safety and disaster management, setting up of more railway lines and infrastructure through Public private partnership, better passenger amenities, concessions for patients suffering from serious ailments and setting up of green railway stations are some of the highlights of the rail budget presented in the Lok Sabha today.

    Presenting a five year roadmap for the development of railways, Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi exuded confidence that building a new, safe and modern passenger and freight transportation system, would contribute at least 2 to 2.5 per cent to the GDP of the nation as against less than one per cent at present and provide employment opportunities.

    In his maiden Rail Budget, Mr. Trivedi said the Railway budget for the next fiscal has a plan outlay of 60,100 crore rupees with 24,000 crores from gross budgetary support. Giving details, the Railway minister said passenger fares will be increased by 2 paise per kilometer for suburban and ordinary second class, 3 paise per kilometer in second class of mail and express trains, 5 paise per kilometer for sleeper class and 10 paise per kilometer for AC chair car, AC 3 tier and first class. However, the minister said for AC 2 tier the increase will be 15 paise per kilometer and 30 paise per kilometer for AC first class. The Minister said minimum fare and platform tickets will cost five rupees.

    The Railway Minister said 75 new express trains will be introduced while run of 39 trains will be extended and frequency of 23 trains is proposed to be increased. 21 new passenger, 9 DEMU and 8 MEMU services will also be introduced. The budget also proposes introduction of 187 additional sub urban services in Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata.

    The Minister said 50 per cent concession will be given to patients of Aplastic Anaemia and Sickle cell Anaemia in AC two, AC three, chair car and sleeper classes. The facility of travel by Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains have been extended to Arjuna awardees. The travel distance under Izzat scheme has also been increased from 100 kms to 150 kms.

    On passenger amenities, Mr. Trivedi also proposed to set up Indian Railway Station Development Corporation to redevelop 100 stations in the next five years and maintain them on the pattern of airports under public private partnership mode. He proposed to raise the allocation for passenger amenities from the current 762 crore rupees to 1102 crore rupees in the current fiscal to be utilised at 8000 railway stations across the country.

    The Minister announced 725 kilometers of new lines, 700 kilometer doubling of tracks, 800 kilometer gauge conversion and 1100 kilometer electrification in the next fiscal. He said 6872 crore rupees have been provided for new lines, while 3393 crore rupees have been given for doubling of tracks and 1950 crore rupees for gauge conversion and 828 crore rupees for electrification have also been provided.

    Giving highest priority to the safety related issues, Mr. Trivedi said signaling system of Railways will be modernized with the provisioning of advanced technological features. He said, these would include panel or route relay interlocking covering 700 more stations by 2014. He also said interlocking of more than 1500 level crossing gates in addition to the 10000 already interlocked will be done.

    The Minister said train protection and warning systems would be installed on more than 3000 route kilometers. He said this would cover the entire automatic signaling territory on Indian Railways. The Minister said the signaling and telecom works would cost 39,110 crore rupees in the next five year and proposed to provide 2002 crore rupees in the current fiscal for this.

    To ensure better safety of passengers, Integrated Security System will be installed at all 202 identified stations. Escorting of trains by railway protection force and government railway police has been extended to 3500 trains.

    Mr. Trivedi proposed to set up a Railway safety authority to ensure better security for passengers. He also proposed to set up a Railway Research and Development Council at the apex level to spearhead such efforts in line with recommendations of Kakodkar Committee.

    Mr. Trivedi said that the modernisation of railways will be taken on a ‘Mission Mode’ approach with clear objectives, measurable milestones, tangible deliverables and well defined timelines. There will be mission directors in each of the identified areas for a three year term who will directly report to the railway board. Each mission would be provided with appropriate budget and operational autonomy.

    Talking of the budget estimates the Minister said a target of 1025 million tones of freight loading has been envisaged which is 55 million tones more than the the loading last year. He also sought to create a Logistic Corporation for development and management of existing railway goods and sheds which will bring down the operating costs.

    He announced to set up a coaching complex in Navi Mumbai at Panvel and coach maintenance complex at Kalamboli in partnership with Maharashtra government. The Minister proposed to set up a coaching terminal at Naihati to be named after Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay to commemorate his 175th birth anniversary. Mr. Trivedi said a special train across the country will travel to spread the message of Bankim Chandra who gave the country Vande Matram.

    The Minister observed that there is emergent need to connect the remote and areas through rail connectivity schemes to foster growth. Besides there are projects of national importance in north-eastern regions and in Jammu and Kahsmir which are crucial to inclusive growth. He said the PradhanMantri Rail Vikas Yojna conceptualized on these lines, is under formation. He said an additional funding assistance of Five Lakh Crore rupees will be needed for this.

    Saying that Indian Railway has to play a significant role in augmenting the economy of the country, Mr. Trivedi said that his ministry is taking up projects to provide rail connectivity to Nepal and Bangladesh. He proposed to have a rail link to connect Agartala in Tripura with Akhaura in Bangladesh apart from Jogbani in Bihar to Biratnagar in Nepal.

    For efficient freight transportation to and from ports and to facilitate decongestion of routes, development of dedicated freight corridors from Ludhiana to Dankuni and Dadri to Jawaharlal Nehru port have been undertaken.

    The Minister said this is one of the biggest infrastructure projects under execution spread over 3300 kilometres covering eastern, northern and western parts of the country. He said several initiatives are being taken to set up rail based industries. He announced that Rail Wheel plant at Chhapra would be ready for full commissioning in this year.

    Mr. Trivedi said the Rae Barelli Coach Factory if now ready for rolling out coaches and Diesel Component Factory at Dankuni is under trial production while Wagon manufacturing factory at Kulti to commence production soon. He said another wagon factory is being located at Sitapali in Ganjam district in Odisha as announced earlier.

    On public private partnership, the Minister said to facilitate the first and last mile connectivity proactively, Ministries of coal, power, shipping and steel were approached for identification of appropriate rail connectivity projects. He said a total of 17 such projects have been sanctioned and another 28 identified.

    On high speed initiatives, Mr. Trivedi said that his Ministry has decided to construct high speed passenger rail corridors in the country for running trains at a speed of 250 to 350 kms per hour. He said pre-feasibility studies on six corridors have already been taken up.

    One more corridor to be studies this year is Delhi-Jaipur-Ajmer-Jodhpur. Study of Pune-Mumbai-Ahmedabad corridor has been completed. The Minister mentioned that Kerala govt. is also pursuing a high speed corridor between Thirunanathapuram to Kasargod. He said National High Speed Rail Authority is under formation.

    As part of the Green Initiatives, the Minister proposed 72 mega watt capacity windmill plants to be set up in Andhra Pradesh, Karnatka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal.

    He also proposed to set up 200 remote railway stations as green energy stations powered entirely by solar energy and providing solar lighting system at 1000 manned level crossing gates. He also announced commissioning of two bio diesel plants at Raipur and Tondiarpet besides introduction of a green train to run through the pristine forests of North Bengal.

    Admitting that most of the projects approved in the last budget could not be completed in a time bound manner, the Railway minister said this was largely due to inadequate level of budgetary support.

    He, however, maintained that a total of 487 projects of new lines, gauge conversion, doubling and railway electrification with a throw-forward liability of over one lakh crore rupees are at various stages of execution. 
    Cong welcomes rail budget, BJP terms "anti people"
    Mar 14,  2:45 PM

    The Congress today welcomed the Rail Budget presented in the Lok Sabha by the Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi. Talking to reporters outside Parliament , the party leader Ms Girija Vyas said the the proposed rise in the passenger fare is very minimal and it will not impact the common man.

    On the other hand, the BJP termed the Rail budget as anti people. Talking to reporters outside Parliament, Senior Party leader, Ananth Kumar said that the hike in freight and passenger fare will largely impact the common man.

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