Bengal rail projects could take a beat with Mukul Roy`s exit

Last Updated: Thursday, September 20, 2012 - 21:15

New Delhi: With Mukul Roy set to exit the Railway Ministry on Friday, uncertainty looms large over the fate of ongoing projects especially those in West Bengal.

During his short tenure of five months, Roy spent most of his time in his home state focusing on key rail projects. This included the ambitious Kolkata Metro expansion project which was recently taken over by railways from Urban Development Ministry.

However, this and several other projects like Dankuni loco components factory, Kachrapara coach factory and Coochbehar rail factory are expected to hit a roadblock with Roy`s exit, said senior Railway Ministry officials.

Railways had recently sought about Rs 900 crore from the Planning Commission, a significant portion of which would have been used to fund Bengal projects. As of now, there are about 16 rail projects which are at various stages of execution.

Roy is expected to visit Rail Bhawan tomorrow before meeting the Prime Minister to tender his resignation along with other Trinamool Ministers.

One of the key decisions Roy took recently was taking away the powers of transfers from Railway Board members.

Trinamool Congress held the Railway Ministry for about three years in UPA-II during which the then Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee presented a vision document 2020 for railways.

The document was used as the base for initiating expansion and modernisation programmes by the successive Railway Ministers Dinesh Trivedi and Roy.

Trivedi went a step further to set up two committees for safety and modernisation and took the bold step of raising passengers fares, a move which cost him his chair as his party boss Mamata ordered his exit from the ministry.

While reformist Trivedi was Railway Minister for nine months, Roy`s tenure lasted for about five months only.

PTI



First Published: Thursday, September 20, 2012 - 21:15

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