Professor at iconic university BHU, Raghavendra Pratap Singh, whose expectations were totally nullified after the actual railway budget came in, termed it as 'below the expectations of residents of Varanasi'.
He said, "The railway minister perturbed things more for us. We are not provided with the primary things like safety, cleanliness, reservation and food as per our expectations. I appreciate the introduction of Bullet trains but where had prior things got lost? Manoj Sinha, the minister of state for Railways hails from Varanasi's neighboring district Ghazipur only, so we were expecting at least he would add few good things in the budget for Varanasi and the surrounding areas. 'Mila kuch nahi Banaras ko' (Varanasi got nothing in the budget)."
Athar Jamar Lari, leader of political outfit Quami Ekta Party, mourned on the negligence of government toward Varanasi and seemed irked on the rail budget. He also opposed the government's initiative of introducing bullet trains in India. He said that the government ignored the present issues that are hurdle in the way of Indian railways growth.
He said, "Although Varanasi is PM Narendra Modi's constituency but bullet train is announced on Mumbai-Ahmedabad route. I really don't know from where the govt will get funds for such projects. It seems his constituency has no right to be privileged to get bullet train. And why don't rail minister works on timing issues like late arrival and departure of trains first? The budget was really disturbing."
Professor at one of the oldest institution higher education in Varanasi, Udai Pratap Autonomous College, Dr. Ramesh Dhar Dwivedi, expressed his disappointment on the rail budget and shared with us what he was actually expecting.
He said, "The doubling rail tracks between Lucknow-Vadodara, Allahabad-Bihar and Banglore-Rameshvaram is still pending. When will the work start on these tracks and end successfully? We were expecting more but at the end of the day we got nothing. I wish Varanasi would have been given at least a Semi-High speed train."
Lenin Raghuvanshi, a noted social activist in Varanasi, termed the disappointment of Banarsis wrong. He said that budget can't be state or any district specific. He was optimistic for the next rail budget to be presented in 2015.
Raghuvanshi said, "Though the rail budget did not give too much to the Varanasi, but one shouldn't be that much disappointed with this budget as it's just for this year only. 'kuch mahino ki baat hai' (it is just for few months). In next year's budget there could be many offering as per the expectations of Varanasi. I know the condition of railways is stressful, but we should look forward toward next year's budget."