Railway Minister Lalu Prasad presented the interim Railway Budget for 2009-10 in Parliament on Friday, saying the Railways have scaled new heights.

Highlights of Lalu’s speech in Parliament:

  • Reduction in passenger fares of ordinary passenger trains by Re 1 for fares costing up to Rs fifty per passenger for journey above ten kms.
  • Fares of AC First Class, AC II tier, AC III tier and AC Chair Car also to be reduced by two per cent.
  • Freight rates unchanged.
  • Feasibility on for bullet trains between Delhi-Patna, Delhi-Amritsar, Chennai-Bangalore.
  • Railways expected to show a surplus of Rs 18,847 crore in the next fiscal.
  • FY09 Operating ratio seen at 88%; FY10 Operating ratio seen at 89%
  • FY10 freight revenue expected at Rs 59,060 crore
  • To spend Rs 37,900 cr in FY10
  • Started work on Dehi-Mumbai freight corridor
  • 25 survey planned for 8 doubling projects

  • Dedicated freight corridor from Ludhiana to Kolkata to be inaugurated later this month by Sonia Gandhi.
  • Feasibility studies are on for running bullet trains between Delhi-Amritsar, Ahmedabad-Pune, Hyderbada-Vijaywada- Chennai, Chennai-Bangalore, Delhi-Patna, Kolkata-Haldia and Ernakulam-Howrah.
  • 43 new train services to be started in 2009-10, extension of 14 trains envisaged and frequency of 14 trains to be increased.
  • With a view to facilitate improved train operations, it has been decided to set up two new railway divisions at Bhagalpur and Thawe.
  • 25 surveys proposed comprising 14 for new lines, 3 for gauge conversion and 28 for doubling projects.
  • Pre-feasibility study for running high speed bullet trains being pursued.
  • Construction of rail wheel factory, Chapra on in full swing; Work on diesel and electric locomotive factories at Marhoura and Madhepura targeted for early start.
  • Bharat Wagon Limited, Mokama & Muzaffarpur transferred to Ministry of Railways; transfer of wagon units of Burn Standard at Burnpur and Howrah also under consideration on the same lines.
  • Freight loading target retained at 850 mt; number of passengers likely to grow by around 7% over previous year.
  • Implementation of recommendations of VI Central Pay Commission (CPC) likely to cost the Railways Rs 9,000 cr more on staff costs and Rs 4,500 cr more on pensionary charges as compared with previous year.
  • Hence, Ordinary Working Expenses (OWE) increased to Rs 55,000 cr in the R.E and the appropriation to Pension Fund to Rs 10,500 cr.
  • Appropriation to DRF retained at Rs 7,000 cr.
  • Dividend payable to General Revenues kept at Rs 4,711 cr.
  • Cash surplus before dividend projected at Rs 19,320 cr and the Operating Ratio at 88.3% despite implementation of the VI CPC.
  • Revised plan outlay kept at Rs 36,773 cr.
  • Agartala, the capital of the Tripura, connected by railway line. First train service in Kashmir valley commenced between Anantnag and Rajwansher. To be followed by Baramulla and Qazigund.
  • Successful trials completed for running electric locomotives with OHE at a height of about 7.5 mts in preparation for running double stack containers on electrified Western Dedicated Freight Corridor
  • Work on Eastern Dedicated Freight Corridor commenced near Dehri-on?Son on 10th February,2009. Work on Western DFC to commence this month.
  • Freight loading targeted at 910 mt ? an increment of 60 mt on 2008-09; number of passengers likely to grow by around 7%.
  • Gross Traffic Receipts estimated at Rs 93,159 cr i.e. Rs 10,766 cr more than RE 2008-09.
  • Ordinary Working Expenses budgeted at Rs 62,900 cr to cover the full year impact of VI CPC and the payment of 60% arrears due in 2009-10.
  • Dividend payable to General Revenues kept at Rs 5,304 cr at the current applicable rates.
  • Budgeted Operating Ratio 89.9%.
  • Plan outlay kept at Rs 37,905 cr.

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