Railway Minister asks parliamentarians to be realistic about passenger fare hike
Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal on Thursday asked parliamentarians to be "realistic" about the need for hiking passenger fares.
Replying to a query from Trinamool Congress member Saugata Ray in Parliament on whether the government is planning a passenger fare hike, Bansal said: ""All that I would like to say is that I would expect the House to be realistic. If we want to move forward; if we want the Railways to serve the country as it was mandated to; if we want the Railways to contribute, as we say, about 1.5 to two percentage points to the GDP growth of the country and be a veritable engine of growth; I think I have to come up sometime and then I would solicit the support of the House at an appropriate time."
He said projects totalling to Rs four lakh crore have been delayed for a number of years.
"These are projects which have been announced following demands from members and the way we are raising funds, I think it would be difficult for us to complete these projects in the next 50 years. We have been spreading our resources very thinly across the board and across the large number of projects," Bansal said.
He sought cooperation from the members in prioritisation of railway projects to be taken up for implementation.
"I wish to make it clear that no project would be scrapped or left out," he said.