Gowda non-committal on passenger fare hike

Gowda non-committal on passenger fare hike

Gowda non-committal on passenger fare hike

A call on any passenger fare hike in trains will be taken after discussions in the Cabinet and also with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Railway Minister Sadananda Gowda said today.

"I will have a discussion with my Cabinet colleagues. I will also have discussions with railway officials. Finally I will have discussion with honourable Prime Minister and then only whatever decision," he said after assuming charge at Rail Bhawan here when asked whether Railways will go for a hike in passenger fares and freight rates as proposed by the previous government.

"Unless I see the pros and cons of these things, I cannot say right now. Certainly, I need two weeks time to take stock of the situation," Gowda further said.

Reeling under financial crunch, Railways had proposed 14.2 per cent hike in passenger fares and 6.5 per cent increase in freight rate on May 16. The hike was to be effected from May 20.

However, Railways put the hike order notification on hold and issued another saying let the next government take a decision on it.

"I will also discuss with railway officials about the problems we are facing... what are pending projects. All these things have to discussed and then only I will decide," Gowda said.

About taking up new projects, he said, "I have to do a detailed study. I need to discuss it in details. I will also discuss with the prime minister because he has some noble ideas on rail sector. He has already expressed his views on it during the election campaign."

Gowda said he will draw a road map for Railways after 10 days after detailed discussion with everybody concerned.