With the aim to achieve zero accidents, Indian Railways has sought more than Rs 1 lakh crore from the Finance Ministry to strengthen the track and upgradation of the signalling system to ensure safe train operation.
Indian Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu has written a letter to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley seeking Rs 1,19,183 crore to create a separate safety fund for undertaking various safety works, including track works and elimination of level crossings by construction of rail overbridge and rail underbridge among others, said a senior Railway Ministry official.
Since railways has decided to increase the average speed of trains, it is important that rail track and rail bridges are also strengthened alongwith signalling upgradation.
Besides increasing speed of passenger service, railways has also decided to run freight trains with 25 tonne axle load for which strengthening of track and rail bridge is essential.
Indian Railways had formed a committee comprising officials from finance, electrical, mechanical, civil and signal directorates. The committee identified the works required for enhancing safety and accordingly submitted the report to Railway Board.
“With the Board’s approval, Railway Minister wrote to Finance Minister seeking to create a separate fund for strengthening safety to prevent accidents,” the official said adding we are awaiting a positive response.”
Since majority of accidents happen at unmanned level crossings it is essential to eliminate those level crossings through construction of ROB and RUB.