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Railway Budget
Railways Budget 2014-15: Don't handover my rail in the hands of private sector
The railways is meant for the poor masses first and then for other average of affluent segments of society. It should be absolutely free of corrupt practices, thievery and 'free-rides' of Flaneur Jan Sevaks and Swayambhoo Lok Nayaks. It should be self-sufficient. Public should be made to pay only to keep it running with austerity. I would demand the government to provide only a few facilities at railway platforms and in the trains while chugging.

Let me call them 3 S - Sanitation, Safety and Security. It was so horrible and scent of urine would welcome if you approach the New Delhi Railway Station from Ajmeri Gate side. Most of toilets at small stations are partly dysfunctional and stink to hell. Most of common trains have most unhygienic toilets and sinks. Water supply is erratic. The Railways should improve holistically the hygiene and sanitation of stations, trains and railways lines near and at the railway stations at least.

I am not an economist and I can't point out exactly where the railways would find the resources which could support to meet its cosmetics. It is for the Prime Minister, the Railway Minister and Minister to decide and allocate the funds. They are being elected and paid to do that. The money should come from Finance Ministry as it provides for other essential non-profit making services.

Subsidies are must here to bring sense, purpose and responsibility in public life. I'm a firm believer in 'Welfare State'. Hike in train fare is justified for Luxury Passengers. Every train I travel is packed and seems to be bursting at the seams. A compartment which is meant for, say 80 passengers carries 180 heads. Most or all of them are ticket holders. Then, why the railways run in losses. Freight hike is pure business decision. Most or all the items are generating money for the owners. They should also be made to pay in proportion of the value of their load.

Public gets worried if the hike becomes unreasonable. Small hikes are justified. The induction of more trains to connect the main cities with the rural areas is a measure that is urgently needed. New 'Intercity' trains would help to reduce the overcrowding of long-route trains. It would make the train journey a threshold experience of comfort for regular and daily passengers and the long-distance travelers as well.

We are not ready for high speed bullet train. Our railway tracks are too crowded. It would be quite pleasant if we could run the trains at their present speed efficiently. I can't trust our private sector at this juncture to do justice with this welfare service in the name of better facilities. I can see the lurking fear of going this essential service in the hands of Private Sector in near future as our Prime Minister has said, "You will see a change in near future."

As per Modi's public statements, the ministry is likely to embrace "private parties", who would invest in railway projects which will not necessary be mutually beneficial. It would make the rich investor richer at the expense of poor Indian.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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