Proposed Increase not Enough to Cover Impact of Fuel Price Rise in 8 Years
Railway Minister Shri Dinesh Trivedi has announced minor increase in fares so as to cause minimal impact on the common man and to keep the burden within tolerance limits in general. He has proposed only 2 paise per km extra for suburban and ordinary second class travel. Similarly, increase for mail express second class will be by only 3 paisa per km; for sleeper class only 5 paisa per km; for AC chair car, AC 3 tier & First Class by only 10 paise per km; AC 2 Tier by only 15 paise per km; and AC I by only 30 paise per km. He said the corresponding rationalization in minimum distance and fare chargeable in various classes has also been proposed.
The proposed revisions will have marginal impact on the fares. The increase in fares for suburban second class passengers traveling 35 km will be only Rs.2. For non-suburban second class ordinary passenger traveling a distance of 135 km, increase will be Rs.4 only. For second class mail/express passenger traveling a distance of 375 km, the addition to the fare will be only Rs.12 and that for a 750 km journey by sleeper class on mail/express train will be only Rs.40. An AC 3 tier passenger traveling a distance of 530 km will be required to pay an additional Rs.57. The increase for AC 2 tier and AC I passenger traveling over same distance will be Rs.84 and Rs.163 respectively.
Shri Trivedi said the proposed adjustments would not even cover the impact of increase in fuel prices during last 8 years and valuable passengers of Indian Railways have been insulated from the burden of increase in the staff costs.
The Minister also announced intention to segregate fuel component in the cost associated with passenger services. He said the mechanism to be called FAC (fuel adjustment component) will be dynamic nature and will change in either direction with the change in fuel cost. He said it was not possible for Indian Railways to keep the passengers cushioned from the impact of input cost increases in future.