Saturday, February 27, 2010

Railway Budget

Thomas & Friends: Railway Rhymes (Lap Library)
Hi friends, you all must have followed the railway budget presented by union railway minister Mamata Banerjee. There are plenty of things to think on this budget. The most attractive which i found was the introduction of 'Matrabhoomi','Karmabhoomi' and 'Janmabhoomi' trains meant specially for a ladies, working class people who regularly travel by trains and the defense n army troops, respectively. Further there's a proposal to increase the length railway tracks by 1000km in the coming year. Mamata Banerjee has also argued for multitasking in the railway stations like setting up hospitals, kendriya vidyalaya schools, hostels, lodges and shopping malls in and around railway stations. Certain stations are o be upgraded as World-class stations but it had been proposed when Lalu Prasad was our railway minister and still less improvement is seen in this direction. The proposal is still in planning stages with the local railway officials. There has been a lot of discussion that Bengal had a major share in the railway budget. According to me, every Railway minister gives some privileges to his/her home state like Lalu Prasad did for Bihar when he was handling this port-folio. It was obvious that Bengal will get special privileges like setting up of some wagon industries and extension of the metro in Kolkata. Mamata has proposed to rename few metro stations in Kolkata like park street as Bhagat Singh and Kalighat as Mother Teresa. this was totally needless and does not seem reasonable. While some names are appreciable like M.G Road station as Thakurbari station. Mamata has also gifted something to what she mentioned has 'the country's most neglected part'.The North-East states do not have a 2-way rail track and it had been years the people of the region were demanding for it. Mamata has proposed it for the route Guwahati-Tinsukia-Dibrugarh. The implementation of upgrading stations to World-class and Ideal stations need to been accelerated. Mamata has also crossed the borders and proposed to start a train named 'e par Bangla o par Bangla' from West-Bengal to Bangladesh. She has also provided a train named 'Amar Shonar Bangla' from Howrah to Agartala through Bangladesh which will help in reducing the time of travel of the passengers. .Its not-so-good news as Secunderabad station, the headquarter of South-Central railways did not get a place in the World-class stations list, but it would be upgraded as one of the Ideal stations. Besides, Mamata has proposed to run special trains during CWG in Delhi which also includes the double-decker train in the Delhi-Kolkata route. This double decker is nw being manufactured at Kapurthala. Besides, the Cancer patients will enjoy free travel in Indian railways in 3AC and sleeper class. Altogether its an ambitious budget whose aims have to be met by proper implementation of the ideas proposed which is certainly not going to be easy for the superior of the World's biggest network of railways.

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