Sunday, October 30, 2016

Indian Railways' income going down despite reforms
Oct 29,2016, New Delhi, DHNS



Indian Railways is losing both passengers and freight. Its earnings during the last six months have fallen in comparison with what it had earned last year during the same period. Incomes from both freight and passengers segments are going down.

The government has taken many measures to increase railways’ income. It has rationalised freight charges to attract more transportation of goods, and introduced flexi fares in passenger travel to earn from this segment.

Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu had argued that concessions in freight charges would increase loading and income will go up. However, this did not happen. The loading, in fact, has gone down. This has resulted in loss of income.

“This is because of recession. Overall business environment is depressing,” says a senior railway official. The expectation of earning more from passenger segment by introducing flexi fares also could not materialise. The Indian Railways has lost passengers to other modes of transport.

The reduction in number of passengers neutralised the income from increased fares through flexi fare scheme. This reduction has been witnessed more in first and second AC classes. Here, the fare has almost touched the amount which is being charged for traveling by air.

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