The Indian Railways has closed 2013-14 with a 15 per cent increase in revenue, rising to Rs 1,40,485 crore, compared to Rs 1,21,831 crore last year.
Though higher tariff and fuel surcharge helped it register an increase in passenger earnings at Rs 37,478 crore, compared to Rs 31,896 crore in 2012-13, its passenger volumes dropped marginally.
The passenger earnings were, however, a tad lower than the interim budget estimates of Rs 37,500 crore.
The total approximate numbers of passengers booked during the year were 8,535 million, compared to 8,602 million last year.
The worrying part for the Railways is the fall in long-distance travel which reflected in the non-suburban traffic, where the numbers of passengers booked were 3,985 million compared to 4,128 million the previous year. In short-distance suburban travel, passenger bookings rose to 4,549 million from 4,473 million previous year.
Anticipating a below target performance on the passenger side, the Railways had revised its earning target downwards at Rs 1,40,499 crore in the February interim budget. The original target set at the beginning of 2013-14 was Rs 1,43,742 crore.
In the goods segment, the total earning scrore during 2013-14 surpassed the revised estimate to touch Rs 94,925 crore, compared to Rs 82,852 crore during the same period last year. In February, the interim budget had revised the freight earning target to Rs 94,000 crore from Rs 93,554 crore.
The Railways carried 1,053 million tonnes of revenue earning freight traffic during 2013-14. The freight carried shows an increase of 43.68 million tonnes over the freight traffic of 1,009 million tonnes carried in 2012-13.
In March 2014, revenue from freight was 100.49 million tonnes. There is an increase of 2.15 million tonnes over the freight traffic of 98.34 million tonnes carried by the railways in the year-ago period.
The approximate revenue earnings from other coaching, which is primarily non-traffic receipts, amounted to Rs 3,818 crore during fiscal 2013-14, compared to Rs 3,137 crore during in 2012-13.