Home > Money > Budget > Budget News & Analysis FEBRUARY 26, 2002 | 13:45 IST    Feedback 


     
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Highlights of Railway Budget for 2002-03

  • Changes in passenger fares expected to yield additional Rs 9.10 billion.
  • All proposals to come into effect from April 1, 2002.

Passenger fares:

  • Minimum fare for second class (mail/express) to be
  • increased from Rs 15 to Rs 16. At longer distances up to 341 kms, the increase ranges from Rs 1 to Rs 6.
  • Relativity index for sleeper class (mail/express) to be increased from Rs 155 to Rs 160 and AC chair car from Rs 300 to Rs 350.
  • For AC First class, reduction in relativity index proposed from Rs 1,440 to Rs 1,400 to make it more competitive with air travel.
  • No change in relativity index for other classes of travel.
  • Minimum fare for second class (ordinary) increases from Rs 3 to Rs 4.
  • Maximum increase for any distance up to 100 kms is only Rs 3. At certain distances, fares would be lower by Rs 1 to Rs 2 due to rationalisation.
  • The fares for distances beyond 100 km for second class (ordinary) will be fixed at 55 per cent of the second class (mail/express) fares.
  • Fares for second class monthly season ticket (MST) to be fixed equivalent to fares for 15 single journeys by second class (ordinary).

No changes in:

  • System of charging for quarterly season ticket (QST)
  • Existing fare structure of Rajdhani and Shatabdi
  • Parcel and luggage rates, including for newspapers and magazines

Freight rates:

  • No across-the-board increase in freight rates - only rationalisation carried out.
  • Freight structure for base class rationalised to remove anomalies, resulting in marginal decrease at certain distances and minimal increase in certain others.
  • Number of classes reduced from 59 to 32.
  • Ratio of freight in highest class to lowest drops from eight to 3.3
  • 25 anomalous classes abolished.
  • Commodities of common use such as edible salt, fruits, vegetables, jaggery, sugar, certain items of edible oils, foodgrains, pulses, organic manures, urea, fodder and dry grass are proposed to be carried at the lowest class-90.
  • Impact expected to be minimal.
  • Marginal increase in rates of coal, iron ore and raw material to steel plants.
  • Marginal reduction in case of iron and steel, pig iron, cement and most petroleum products.
  • These modifications expected to yield additional revenue of Rs 4.50 billion.

Passenger amenities:

  • Railways to introduce 16 new inter-city trains called Jan Shatabdi Express in 2002-03.
  • 25 additional express trains to be introduced.
  • Frequency of 14 pairs of trains being increased - Rajdhani train between Guwahati and New Delhi to run every day.
  • 16 services to be extended
  • Seven new passenger trains to be introduced.
  • IRCTC to set up plants to package drinking water under the brand name 'Rail Neer'.
  • 50 food plazas at various stations to be commissioned.

Annual Plans 2002-03:

  • Including outlay of Rs 22.10 billion on safety works, total Plan Rs 123.30 billion.
  • Fund received from General Exchequer Rs 58.40 billion, including Rs 4.50 billion from Central Road Fund for road safety works.
  • Market borrowings budgeted at Rs 30 billion, internal generation to provide Rs 26.30 billion and safety surcharge collection expected to be Rs 8.60 billion.

Rail Budget estimates 2002-03:

  • Expected growth in traffic 21 million tonnes of freight, four per cent increase in number of passengers.
  • Ordinary working expenses budgeted at Rs 311.60 billion i.e., 7 per cent increase over revised estimates 2001-02.
  • Pensionary charges likely to be Rs 60 billion.
  • Dividend dues budgeted at Rs 26.79 billion to be discharged in full.
  • Plan fund requirement fall short by Rs 13.60 billion - to be covered through additional resource mobilisation.

Review of financial performance 2001-02:

  • Economic slowdown reflected in freight loading reducing the freight earnings by Rs 6.25 billion.
  • Passenger earnings target of Rs 113.87 billion likely to be achieved.
  • Position of railway dues, including those from state electricity boards/power houses continues to be unsatisfactory, standing at Rs 30.14 billion by December-end.
  • With continued emphasis on reduction in expenditure, savings of Rs 10.90 billion in ordinary working expenses.
  • Additional budgetary support of Rs 8.98 billion received for acceleration of selected projects during the year.

Safety:

  • Special Railway Safety Fund to be set up during the year.
  • Proposal to amend RPF Act and Railway Act with a view to empowering RPF under consideration.

Projects:

  • Udhampur-Katra and Qazigund-Baramulla sections to be completed in three years - funds to be provided as an additionality.
  • Ministry of Defence to fund new line between Kolayat and Phalodi and ongoing gauge conversion from Luni to Munabao.
  • No new projects would be included in the budget without requisite clearances being available.
  • 214 route kms of new lines, 542 route kms of gauge conversion, 250 kms of doubling and 375 route kms of railway electrification to be completed in 2002-03.

YOU MAY ALSO WANT TO READ:
The Rediff Budget Special
The Rail Budget 2002-03
The Economic Survey 2001-02
Run-Up To The Budget
Money


 
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