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Rail Budget highlights: Social media is being used for 100% transparency

The Railway Budget for 2016-17 spared passengers and goods movement from any increase in tariffs while it announced introduction of three new superfast trains and creation of dedicated north-south, east-west and east coast freight corridors by 2019.

india Updated: Feb 26, 2016 10:37 IST
HT Correspondent
Railway minister Suresh Prabhu at the Parliament for presenting the Railway Budget along with MOS Manoj Sinha.
Railway minister Suresh Prabhu at the Parliament for presenting the Railway Budget along with MOS Manoj Sinha.(HT Photo/Mohd Zakir)

The Railway Budget for 2016-17 spared passengers and goods movement from any increase in tariffs while it announced introduction of three new superfast trains and creation of dedicated north-south, east-west and east coast freight corridors by 2019.

Presenting his second Budget in the Lok Sabha, Railway minister Suresh Prabhu promised rationalising of the tariff structure by undertaking a review to evolve competitive rates vis-a-vis other modes of transport and to expand the freight basket as a means of additional revenue mobilisation.

What PM Modi said on Prabhu’s Rail Budget:

# Want to congratulate Suresh Prabhu and the entire Team Railways.

# This budget will enhance the Navnirman of the nation.

# Along with IT, investment has been given importance.

# In the last year we have seen lot of success and this budget is an effort to further improve on this.

Here are highlights from his speech:

# The Rail Budget2016 is a story of transformation. We need to reorganise and rejuvenate the Indian Railways.

# PM once said his vision is to make Indian Railways the backbone of India’s progress and economic development.

# For year 2016-17 we expect the operating ratio of 92%.

# Co-operation, collaboration and communication- hallmarks of Indian Railways’ journey forward.

# We need to re-imagine conventional ways of solving issues. We will focus on zero based budgeting approach.

# 1.21 lakh crores capital plan in Rail Budget2016, shunning conventional approach, adopting new ways.

# A saving of 8,720 crore rupees for budget estimates of last year will be effected this year.

# We will be at the forefront of infrastructure investment in the country.

# Action has been initiated on 139 budget announcements made last year.

# Budget’s 3 Rs are restructure, reorgranise, rejuvenate.

# 8.5 lakh crore to be spent over 5 years for modernisation of railway infrastructure.

Watch | Suresh Prabhu says Rail Budget 2016 based on nation’s needs

# Expect revenue growth of over 10% this year.

# Propose to electrify 2,000 km next year, increased electrification budget by 50%.

# Indian Railways to surpass ambitious target of commissioning 2,500 kms of broad gauge lines, almost 30% higher than last year.

# Broad guage Lumding-Silchar section in Assam opened, thus connecting Barak Valley with rest of the country.

# Our mission is to ensure 100% transparency. Social media is being used as a tool to ensure the same.

# North East India, especially Mizoram & Manipur, to be connected through broad gauge soon.

# 17,000 bio toilets & additional toilets in 475 stations before close of this financial year.

# The common people have always been the focus of all our initiatives.

# Cabinet approval for joint ventures with state govts. 17 consented and 6 MoUs signed with state govts.

# Introduced 1,780 automatic ticket vending machines, mobile apps, GoIndia smart cards for cashless purchase of UTS and PRS ticket.

# Enhanced capacity of e-ticketing system from 2,000 tickets per minute to 7,200 per minute.

# We will introduce WiFi services at 100 stations this year, 400 more stations over next two years.

# 2,500 water vending machines at railway stations have been provided.

# Supporting 1.2 lakh concurrent users now, as opposed to 40,000 earlier.

# Reserved middle bays in coaches for women security.

# All major stations to be brought under CCTV surveillance in a phased manner.

# Will introduce Antyodaya Express, a long-distance, superfast train, for common man to be operated on densely populated routes.

# Will introduce Humsafar Express , fully air-conditioned third AC service with an optional service for meals.

# Tejas: Will showcase future of train travel in India with operating speed of 130 KMPH and above.

# E-booking ticket facility on the concessional passes available to journalists.

# Will introduce sub-quota of 33% for women in each of the reserved categories in catering.6

# Local cuisine of choice will be made available.

# Introduce Sarathi Seva in Konkan Railway to help old and disabled passengers.

# Prabhu introduces Utkrisht double-decker AC yatri (Uday) Express with increased capacity of almost 40%.

# Porters to not be called ‘coolies’ but ‘sahayaks’ now; will be trained in soft skills.

# Facility of cancellation of tickets through 139 telephone line.

# Battery operated cars and paid porters services for specially able people.

# Intend sale of tickets through hand-held terminals for short-distance travellers.

# Propose to invite FM radio stations to provide train borne entertainment via PA systems.

# Baby food, hot milk and water to be available on stations.

# To capture automobile traffic, we will soon inaugurate India’s first rail auto hub in Chennai and continue to build more.

Also Read | Live Rail Budget: We are partnering with Google for Wi-Fi, says Prabhu

Rail Budget: Full Coverage