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March 14th, 2012
Flash points from Railway budget 2012-13

For the first time in a decade a Railway Minister has decided in increasing passenger fares. While presenting his maiden Railway Budget in the Lok Sabha Union Minister Dinesh Trivedi announced that passenger fares were being increased “marginally” across all classes.

Eighty-five new line projects to be taken up during 2012-13.

* One hundred and fourteen new line surveys to be undertaken during 2012-13.

* New line projects to get Rs6,870 crore in 2012-13.

* Gauge conversion to be undertaken over 800km with an allocation of Rs1,950 crore.

* Focus during next five years on five areas: tracks, bridges, signalling, rolling stock and stations.

* Signalling to be improved over 19,000km.

* Investment of Rs1.70 lakh crore on rolling stock in next five years.

* Attempt to increase train speeds to 160 kmph; journey time from New Delhi to Kolkata can be brought down to 14 hours from 17 hours.

* Improvements to railway stations can provide employment to 50,000 people.

* Outlay of Rs60,100 crore during 2012-13, the highest ever.
Target of reducing accidents from 0.55 to 0.17 has been met.

* Special purpose vehicle to be set up on safety protocols.

* Independent railway safety authority to be set up as statutory safety body.

* Investment of Rs5.60 lakh crore required for modernisation.
Standard of hygiene needs to be improved substantially; all out efforts will be made on this in the next six months; duty bound to provide high standard of services; special housekeeping body to be set up for stations and trains.

*Corrosion from night soil being discharged from toilets on tracks costs Rs350 crore annually; green toilets to be installed in 2,500 coaches in the next one year.

* Two thousand one hundred specially designed coaches manufactured to meet needs of the differently abled; aim to provide one such coach in each express train.

* Electrification to be undertaken over 6,500km at an allocation of Rs8,000 crore during 12th Plan.