Many big announcements can be made for the Railways in this time’s budget (Budget 2022). Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will present the budget on February 1. In this, she will also tell about the railway budget for the next financial year along with the details of the expenditure and income of the railways. The central government has been trying to improve the railway infrastructure for the last few years. Its goal is to make Indian Railways world class and increase passenger amenities.
It is expected that the budget allocation for the Railways will reach a record level in the next financial year. The government can increase the plan size of the railways by up to 20 percent. With this, the plan size of the Railways will increase to close to Rs 2.5 lakh crore. The government wants to build the best infrastructure for the railways from a long-term perspective. This includes the Freight Corridor for the movement of goods. Apart from this, there is also a plan to run a modern train. For this, the government’s focus is on upgrading rail engines and wagons.
The government has made it a priority to electrify all railway routes and modernize the signaling system. With this, the goods train will be able to reach from one place to another in a very short time. Also, the passenger train will also take less time to cover the distance from one place to another. Passengers will also have a better travel experience.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had made a budget allocation of Rs 2.15 lakh crore for the Railways last year. This was the highest ever budget allocation for the Railways. Of this, Rs 7,500 crore was proposed to be raised from internal sources, Rs 1 lakh crore from extra budgetary sources and Rs 1.07 lakh crore from budget support. Last year, 90 per cent of the budget support was spent on capital expenditure.
In the financial year 2020-21, the budget support for the Railways was very less at only Rs 70,250 crore. A year ago it was Rs 69,967 crore. Sources say that a major part of the amount received by the Railways as budget support may be spent on the Ahmedabad-Mumbai bullet train project. Work is going on at a brisk pace on this project. This is an ambitious project of the Railways. After the success of this project, the government wants to run bullet trains on some more routes in the country.
The government is also considering starting a high-speed train on the Delhi-Varanasi route. This will significantly reduce the travel time between the two cities. For this it is very important to improve the rail infrastructure. This is the reason why railways is focusing on upgrading other infrastructure facilities including signalling.
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