TUMKUR: Union Minister of State for Railways K H Muniyappa on Saturday hinted the passenger fare will not be hiked drastically in the railway budget.He was speaking to reporters here after travelling in a push-pull passenger train from Bangalore to Tumkur. Referring to Sam Pitroda Panel’s recommendations on modernising the railways by imposing surcharge on passenger fare, Muniyappa clarified it cannot be done at one shot. The panel recommended considering no hike for the next eight years. However, according to Muniyappa this plan will not help passengers.
He added the Railway Board examined the feasibility of the recommendations by Pitroda and Anil Kakodkar on safety measures and these will be implemented in a phased manner.
About 2.2 crore passengers commute in trains annually and the railways attracts 10 lakh more passengers every year. “As a result, the traffic on the available tracks increased by 35 per cent, which would be addressed by laying additional tracks,” he said. He admitted owing to loss, the Indian Railways could not provide amenities to the passengers up to their expectations. “Thus resource generation in the form of private-public partnership (PPP) and utilising the available land to set up commercial complexes would be considered to make the railways self-sustainable,” he added.
The minister said CM Sadananda Gowda’s demand for Gadag-Wadi rails will be considered.