Lalu presents Rs 425 crore supplementary demands

New Delhi, Aug 3 | Updated: Aug 4 2005, 05:33am hrs
Railway minister Lalu Prasad on Wednesday presented in Parliament supplementary demands for grants of Rs 425.04 crore of his ministry for 2005-06. The minister also presented regularisation demands for excess grants of Rs 319.42 crore, in the form of expenditure incurred by the Railways during 2002-03.

The supplementary demands for grants for the current fiscal includes capital expenditure of Rs 300 crore and railway funds of Rs 125 crore. Meanwhile, the Standing Committee on Railways (2004-05) presented the 11th report on the Tenth Five Year Plan of the Railways.

In its recommendations, the committee said that out of the Rs 27,600 crore budgetary support earmarked for the Tenth Plan, over 70% had already been placed at the ministrys disposal, during the initial stages of the Plan. The contribution of internal and extra budgetary resource (IEBR) as percentage of the total Plan, IEBR is about 55%, whereas the share of internal resources had gone down to 17% in 2002-03, 19% in 2003-04 an 20% in 2004-05.

The committee suggested that the Railways should gradually move towards a self-sustaining commercial system. The share of the Central assistance to the ministry has increased to over 50% of the Plan.

The committee also said that due to inadequate funding of various outstanding projects, there have been cases of cost overruns. Also, the ministry has not been adhering to Planning Commissions repeated directives that the Railways should review the criteria of priority norms fixed in 1998. The panel has recommended adherance to the aforementioned aspect, it has also said that socially desirable projects should be accorded due consideration by the ministry.