Rlys wants Rs 1 lakh crore for safety fund

Rlys wants Rs 1 lakh crore for safety fund

Rlys wants Rs 1 lakh crore for safety fund

As part of Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu’s effort to mobilise a safety fund to implement zero-accident policy, the ministry would ask the government to contribute Rs 1 lakh crore


“We will pursue our demand with the finance ministry. We need Rs 40000 crore to eliminate unmanned level crossings, Rs 40000 crore to renew tracks, and Rs 5000 crore to renovate bridges,” Railway Board Chairman A K Mittal told reporters on Tuesday after the meeting of General Managers.

The ministry had called for the General Managers’ meeting following concerns over the rise in the number of railway accidents in the last few months. Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu chaired the special meeting.

Prabhu said he would not accept lapses on part of the officials that cause accidents. “There is a need to fix accountability in the system,” Prabhu told the GMs. “Every railway employee from the board member to the trackman should be conscious of their duties.”

“We need to improve supervision, inspection, monitoring and periodical review of safety measures. We have to strive for zero-accident mission and prepare a roadmap and comprehensive action plan,” he said.

There are no excuses for lapses and harsh measures are required to fix them, Prabhu said.

Insisting that vacancies related to safety must be filled in without delay, Minister of State for Railways Manoj Sinha reiterated the need to take firm measures to cut down lapses.
Railway Board Chairman Mittal said one zone would be given the onus of doing safety audit for other zones.

He said railway staff has been taking the rap for lapses and declined to elaborate, noting that making the details public would hit employees’ morale.

Mittal said railways have signed a MoU with the IIT Kanpur to work on a project to curb accidents at Unmanned Level Crossings.

The ministry is also in talks with ISRO for satellite based technology to alert drivers crossing railway track about the approaching train.

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