Published: Sat, February 03, 2018
Health Care | By Alice Shelton

Budget 2018: Mumbai gets Rs 51000 crore for its lifeline

Budget 2018: Mumbai gets Rs 51000 crore for its lifeline

Earlier this month, the railway ministry proposed a massive Rs 49,524 crore allocation for upgrading rail infrastructure under an extension of phase III of the Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP), and later sent it to the finance ministry for its inclusion in the budget.

The Ministry of Railways is having a rethink on flexi-fares and bringing in a dynamic pricing system that will help increase occupancy and enhance revenues, Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said on Friday. The RRSK will have Rs 5,000 crore from Capital (Budgetary Support), Rs 10,000 crore from the Railway Safety Fund and Rs 5,000 crore from the Railways revenue.

Mumbai's local train network got a major fillip as the Budget announced doubling of 90 km of existing lines at Rs 11,000 crore and another 150 km of new lines, including elevated tracks, at Rs 40,000 crore. Over 3600 kms of track renewal is targeted during 2018-19.

"They (people) will give us a chance to present the Budget in years to come", the minister said.

In this budget, a long-awaited thrust has also been given to expand the suburban network, particularly in Mumbai and Bengaluru. "My target is to have CCTV cameras and Wi-Fi in all trains and all coaches", said the railway minister. Goyal said he was mulling the option of inviting private players for the job in a new model of engagement.

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Special emphasis will be renovating 3,600-km of railway tracks which would prevent derailment incidents, Jaitley announced, further adding that a total of 600 Railway stations will be developed across the nation.

Jaitley said that railways would start with a station re-development fund to upgrade all stations with more than 25,000 footfall daily.

In what is perhaps a bigger challenge than the capex target, the set for earnings is Rs 2,01,090 crore- a seven per cent increase from past year.

The Railways will end the fiscal with an operating ratio of 96 per cent, a negligible improvement from last year's 96.5 per cent.

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