Investment is the only way out to address the paucity of resources in Indian Railways, which has been “plaguing” the much needed modernisation of the rail service, Union Minister Suresh Prabhu said here.
In the city to address the 91st Annual General Meeting of All India Railway Men’s Federation, the minister said that the Indian Railways has been functioning with limited resources and the government has been working hard to arrange finance for its modernisation.
He said that although the modernisation of the Indian Railways has already been affected but it has not been progressing in the “desired manner and with desired pace” for want of funds, route development, signal development, bullet trains etc.
“We are compelled to run 150 trains against the capacity of 100. We are not able to meet the freight load. All these are clear indicators of the railway being heavily under-resourced,” he said.
The Railway Minister noted that Indian Life Insurance Corporation has agreed to lend Rs 1.5 lakh crore for the rail service, with the Reserve Bank of India agreeing to cut the interest on loan by half per cent.
Identifying the development of Indian Railways with the development of the nation, Prabhu called upon the employees, who had assembled to attend the conference, to address the issue of corruption.
He said that the practise of travelling without tickets was eroding the revenue of the Indian Railways and the ministry had launched a campaign to discourage the practise in order to plug the revenue leak.
Referring to rail safety, Prabhu called upon the railway employees to work in unison to ensure safety and informed that a safety drive would be launched.