Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee on Saturday said that her ministry has already begun an austerity drive and taken several cost-cutting measures to reduce additional expenditure.
"I'd issued an order to cut all additional expenditure and it's already been implemented in the railways," Banerjee said while flagging off two new trains -- Sealdah-Ajmirsharif Express and Farakka-Nabadwip Express -- from Sealdah station in Kolkata.
She said the railways has already stopped providing accommodation facilities to its officials at five-star hotels.
"We've also cut short other expenditures in an effort to execute the austerity initiative," Banerjee added.
Taking about other plans of her ministry, she said a circular has been issued to all railway divisions for setting up new stations across the country following the local architecture, art and culture of that particular region.
Banerjee also announced that from now on, all railway board examinations across India would be held on a single day to avert any clash or untoward incident in any part of the country.
"We've already recognised all regional languages and declared that students can write in any regional language while appearing in the railway board exams," she said.
The minister also announced the railways will run 120 puja special trains during the coming festive season.
"The railways will also flag off Duranto Express, which was declared in the annual railway budget, on Mahalaya (Sep 18)," she said, adding at least 20 extra counters will be opened in Kolkata's metro railway stations during the Durga Puja period.