Rail Budget to focus on better amenities for passengers

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is likely to push for modernisation of the railways and speeding up of the trains
Last Updated 31 January 2021, 15:08 IST

The Centre is likely to make an allocation of around Rs 1.79 lakh crore for railways in the Union Budget 2021, set to be presented in Parliament tomorrow.

Of this, Rs 75,000 crore will be gross budgetary support (GBS). This is Rs 18,000 more than last year's allocation, which was Rs 1.61 lakh crore.

Rail Budget, now part of the Union Budget, is likely to announce steps to attract more freight loadings as more sections of the Dedicated Freight Corridors are being commissioned for commercial operation.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is likely to push for modernisation of the railways, speeding up of the trains and better amenities to passengers.

The budget may focus on the introduction of modern coaches and announcing high-speed passenger trains to provide better passenger amenities. The government may also announce a few Tejas trains, a dedicated railway line to move agriculture goods and some infrastructural upgrade of railways.

The Centre may focus more on launching high-speed private trains this time connecting major tourist hubs, pilgrimage spots, and other strategically important areas.

More bullet train network is likely to be announced. The railway may make some allocations for its 'green railways' to boost the national transporter's plan to go fully green by 2030.

The budget is likely to spell out a roadmap for generating more funds through PPP mode and also the amount to be raised through borrowings.

The Economic Survey also emphasised on raising funds through public-private partnerships. "The government has allowed private players to operate in the Railways through the public, private partnership (PPP) mode under the New India, New Railway initiative," the survey said.

(Published 31 January 2021, 15:08 IST)

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