ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

S AnanthanarayananSubscribe to S Ananthanarayanan

Getting Back on the Rails

Revenue from rail freight traffic is increasingly bearing the burden of the cost of passenger traffic. In a high fixed cost industry like the railways this amplifies the impact of a downturn in freight movement on overall revenue. But will the constitution of a Rail Tariff Authority help the Railway Board implement tariff revisions that will bring some order to the finances of the railways?

Funds Crunch and the Railways

Beyond the political drama over the ouster of Dinesh Trivedi from the Ministry of Railways, it is clear that the railways are in desperate need of funds. The Railways Budget for 2012-13 tried to address the issue.

The Railway Budget: What It Will Contain and What It Should Contain

In an effort both to fund the investment programme of the Indian Railways as well as to create the mirage that the current leadership has managed to do it without recourse to raising fares or imposing visible economies, the railway budget has been transformed over the years into a tool for presenting unreal figures. In the process, presenting the success of the railways as a reflection of the policies of a political party in power or even of the personality of the railway minister has become a routine in which everybody plays a willing part. The party in power, the railway minister, and the officials of the ministry then find little option, in lean years, but to continue the windowdressing, the half truths and sham accounting.
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