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Investment in railways increased to 1.40 lakh cr in Modi regime: Manoj Sinha

He said investment in the national highway sector increased by six times till 2014, but in the railways it was low.

jaipur Updated: Apr 10, 2018 22:03 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Jaipur
Rajasthan news
Minister of state for railways Manoj Sinha speaks at the Birla auditorium in Jaipur on Tuesday. (Prabhakar Sharma/HT Photo)

Minister of state for railways Manoj Sinha said the biggest challenge the Indian Railways faced before the Narendra Modi-led government came to power at the centre was investment.

“Prior to 2014, the investment in Indian Railways was ₹46,000-₹47,000 crore, which under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has increased to ₹1.40 lakh crore,” said Sinha, while addressing the 63rd Regional Rail Week of North Western Railway at Birla Auditorium in Jaipur on Tuesday.

He said investment in the national highway sector increased by six times till 2014, but in the railways it was very low. “Now, with increase in investment in Indian Railways, even the budget allocation for NWR has increased from ₹600-₹700 crore to ₹4,500 crore. Lots of ambitious targets have been taken such as electrification, gauge conversion works and others. NWR had more metre gauge lines, but now hardly any metre gauge line is left, and even if left, it will be converted soon. Priority has been given to electrification also,” he added.

Sinha said, “Last year was very challenging for railways, as a question mark was put on the working of Indian Railways after Khatauli rail accident. Taking immediate action, we started working on increasing faith of people on Indian Railways and gave top priority to safety.”

He said challenges are many, but safety is top priority. “Safety, security and punctuality are main and remaining (things) are cosmetic. If these aspects are taken care (of), then rest of the work automatically will be proper,” he added.

Sinha also asked the railway employees to behave properly with passengers, “as misbehaviour of a single person maligns the image of railways and no one has right to damage the image of the railways.”

Praising the railway employees, he said Indian Railways has achieved a lot and its credit goes to the employees. “The railway staff like army works throughout the year whether it is Holi, Diwali or Bakreed, as they take passengers to their destination,” he added.

He said in the last 35 years, for the first time, last year the railway accidents were less than 100. In all, 73 accidents took place last year.

Earlier, NWR general manager TP Singh highlighted the achievements of NWR. Jaipur MP Ramcharan Bohra thanked the minister for various projects being carried out in the NWR region.

Sinha felicitated 71 officers and employees of the NWR for their good work and gave 13 group awards.

Later, Sinha also visited the railway exhibition at the Jaipur railway station.

First Published: Apr 10, 2018 22:03 IST