Railways shifts focus from Rajdhani, Shatabdi trains; to upgrade second, third class coaches

Indian Railways will now focus more on upgrading the facilities of the second class and third class rail coaches, instead of adding more facilities in premium trains

Railways shifts focus from Rajdhani, Shatabdi trains; to upgrade second, third class coaches

New Delhi: Indian Railways will now focus more on upgrading the facilities of the second class and third class rail coaches, instead of adding more facilities in premium trains like Rajdhani or Shatabdi Express, Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said on Thursday.
 
Goyal’s announcement came a few weeks after Budget 2018, where Finance Minister Arun Jaitley allocated a record Rs 1.48 lakh crore for the national transporter to raise its carrying capacity and improve the train travel experience.
 
Of this, Rs 1.46 lakh crore is the capital expenditure, while Rs 2,028 crore is to reimburse operating losses on strategic lines and reimburse Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation for the operational cost of e-ticketing.
 
In Budget 2017, Jaitley had waived service charges on railway e-tickets to encourage cashless transactions. The charges waived were Rs 40 for AC class and Rs 20 for sleeper class.
 
However, Jaitley said that a large part of the expenditure is for capacity creation, and mentioned different initiatives being taken.
 
These include track doubling, and third and fourth line works of 18,000 km; 5,000 km of gauge conversion; redeveloping 600 railway stations, equipping them with Wi-Fi and CCTV cameras; introduction of modern train-sets; and escalators for stations with footfalls over 25,000.
 

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