Presenting a populist budget, Railways Minister Dinesh Trivedi today
announced marginal hike in passenger fares ranging from 2 paisa per
kilometre to 30 paisa per kilometre in various categories of trains
despite noting that Railways was passing through a "difficult phase".
He also announced introduction of 75 express trains, 21
passenger trains and extension of 39 trains besides increase in the
frequency of 23 trains.
Fare hike: Platform tickets have
also been raised from Rs 3 to Rs 5. In his first Railway Budget, Trivedi
announced increase in passenger fares by 2 paise per km for suburban and
ordinary Second Class, 3 paise per km for Mail/Express Second Class and 5
per paise per km for Sleeper Class, 10 paise per km for AC Chair Car, AC-3
Tier and First Class. AC-2 Tier will cost more by 15 paise per km while
AC-1 will be dearer by 30 paise per km.
In his over 100-minute
speech, Trivedi said these were aimed at rationalising the fares to cause
"minimal impact" on the common man and "to keep the burden within
tolerance limits in general".
He said he had been counselled to
go for steep increase in passenger fares as there had been no increase in
last eight years but he desisted from doing so "guided by the overriding
concern for aam aadmi (common man)".
The proposed adjustments,
he said, do not even cover fully the impact of increase in fuel prices
during the last eight years. "I am keeping the valuable passengers of
Indian Railways insulated from the burden of increasing staff cost," he
Mamata livid with fare hike, demands roll back
Strongly opposing the hike in rail passenger fare, Trinamool Congress
today demanded a roll-back.
A team of Trinamool Congress MPs met
Railway Minister and party colleague Dinesh Trivedi soon after he
presented the Railway Budget in which he proposed to hike fares across all
Minister of State for Health Sudip Bandopadhyay said
that the TMC MPs asked the Railway Minister to roll-back the fare hike.
pointed out that Trivedi was a member of the Trinamool Congress, he said
the Railway Minister has performed his "constitutional duty" by presenting
"The Trinamool Congress never rolls back its demand,"
"Railway Budget...What was all that about
increasing fares across the board? Upper class...Maybe ok...But all?
Sorry, cannot agree," Trinamool MP Derek O'brien tweeted.
Bandopadhyay said the Trinamool Congress would never support any fare
Prominent hightlights of Railway Budget
with modernisation is Trivedi's mantra
budget disappointing: Nitish Kumar