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03-16-2012, 09:47 AM #1
Rail Budget: A bold step by Dinesh Trivedi
If Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi is not compelled to backtrack on some proposals, his Railway Budget for 2012-13 could be the one that checked the slide in Railways and stopped it being a drag on the economy.
For the Budget's proposals to play out, Trivedi will first have to survive the political storm caused by his decision to increase passenger fares after nine years by 16 per cent to 29 per cent, depending on the distance one has to travel.
Following Trivedi's speech, Vinay Mittal, chairman of the Railway Board defended the decision to increase fares by saying, "No system can function without having adequate funds."
What pushed Trivedi into the taking the decision was that he had to borrow Rs 3,000 crore from the finance ministry this financial year to invest in safety enhancement features.