Railways Ministry has mooted a proposal for creating a Rs 1.19 lakh crore fund for safety related works to be operationalised over the next five years, the government told the Lok Sabha today.
Assuring the House that track renewal works are prioritised for safe running of trains, Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu said total railway track length stood at 1,17,996 kilometres as on March 31, 2015 and their renewal is a continuous activity.
“A proposal for creation of graded Rastriya Rail Sanraksha Kosh (RRSK) of total Rs 1,19,183 crore for safety-related works to be operated over the next five years has been sent to the Ministry of Finance for reconsideration,” Prabhu said during Question Hour.
Under the fund, Rs 44,979 crore is expected to be spend on civil engineering assets including track renewal, rehabilitation of bridges and isolation of railway lines, among others.
Track length of 2,950 kms has been sanctioned for renewal in the current financial year compared to 1,028 kms sanctioned in 2014-15, Prabhu said.
According to the Minister, if any stretch of railway track is not renewed on time, suitable speed restrictions are imposed to ensure safe running of trains.
“The sanctioned track renewal yet to be completed have reduced from 7,258 kilometres for the year 2008-09 to 5,300 kilometres for the year 2014-15. Further, it has reduced to 5,100 kilometres in 2015-16,” he said.
Further, Prabhu said track renewal works are prioritised depending on overall availability of funds ensuring all the time that track is in sound condition for safe running of trains.