Highlights Of Railway Budget 2003-04
Speech of Shri
Nitish Kumar introducing the Railway Budget, 2003-04 on 26th
- Launching of the National Rail
Vikas Yojana - a non-budgetary initiative involving
- Strengthening of Golden Quadrilateral.
- Augmenting rail connectivity
- Construction of four mega bridges.
- No increase in passenger fares.
- Fares of Rajdhani and Shatabdi
Express trains to be linked to rationalised fare structure of
Mail/Express trains, fixing basic fare for each class of Rajdhani
and Shatabdi 15 percent higher than fares of corresponding class
of super-fast Mail Express trains.
- Basic fares of different classes
of Rajdhani and Shatabdi will now be lower for most pairs of
- Basic fare of Jan Shatabdi Express
to be reduced from existing mark up of 10 percent to 5 percent
over fares of corresponding class of super-fast Mail Express
trains; Catering services on Jan Shatabdi to be made optional.
- Reduced fares in selected trains
in non-peak period to be introduced-10 percent reduction in
basic fares of AC-I and AC-II tier in all Rajdhani trains between
15th July, 2003 and 15th September, 2003
proposed as an experimental measure.
- No increase in freight rates proposed.
- Band of freight rates further
compacted and total number of classes reduced from 32 to 27.
- Ratio between freight rates for
the highest and lowest class drops from 3.3 to 2.8.
- Classification of petrol for train
load reduced by 3 stages, freight rates lower by 10.7 percent.
- Classification of certain other
commodities including HSD, Furnace Oil, Crude Oil, Naphtha,
LPG, Compressed Gases, Lubricating Oil, Iron and Steel, Pig
Iron, Iron Scrap, Cement Sheets, Petroleum Coke and Soda Ash
to be reduced by two stages. Molasses, Bitumen, Refined Vegetable
Oils (Div.A) and Sulphuric Acid also proposed to be charged
two stages lower. As a result, freight rates lower by 5.3 to
- Classification of Cement, Clinker,
Manganese Ore and Caustic Soda liquid (in tank wagon) to be
reduced by one stage - reduction in freight around 3.7 percent.
- Uniform class to be assigned for
certain groups of commodities which are loadable up to the full
carrying capacity of wagons, irrespective of the physical form.
- Railways willing to consider long
term agreements with individual oil companies for further reduction
in freight rates provided volumes of additional traffic for
rail movement are guaranteed.
- Graded concessions to be offered
for all traffic booked upto 90 kms.
- Upto 50 kms 50 percent concession.
- 51 kms. to 75 kms. 25 percent
- 76 kms. to 90 kms. 10 percent
- "To pay" surcharge reduced
from 15 percent to 10 percent for coal and from 10 percent to
5 percent for other commodities.
- Any commodity with only wagon
load class to be assigned a train load class one stage lower
than wagon load class-freight reduction 4 percent to 5.26 percent.
- 50 additional Express trains to
- Frequencies of 13 popular trains
to be increased.
- 24 services to be extended.
- MEMU/DEMU services to be introduced
in 11 sections.
- Un-reserved Ticketing System to
- Refund against reserved ticket
after departure of train to be permitted from any PRS center
three hours after train reaches destination.
- Charge for issuing duplicate ticket
to be refunded at PRS center at destination on completion of
- Minimum age for men to avail Senior
Citizens concession reduced from 65 to 60 years.
- Concessions to Cancer, Thalassemia
major patients, heart patients extended to some other classes
of travel. Kidney patients traveling for treatment also to get
- Distance limit and restriction
on place of residence for Accredited Press Correspondents availing
concession, to be removed. Further, 30 percent concession in
Rajdhani/Shatabdi trains also to be given.
- Monitoring mechanism to be improved
through introduction of a new computerised Coaching Operation
Information Systems (COIS).
- Task Force constituted to frame
an Action Plan
- Specialized equipment to be deployed
in association with private sector.
- White paper covering the entire
spectrum of issues involved in Safety in train operations to
be presented in Parliament during the current session.
- More than 20,000 vacancies in
safety categories in Group `D' to be filled up through Railway
Recruitment Boards within the next one year.
- Upgradation of training facilities
and introduction of modules on disaster management proposed
in the training centres.
- Anti-Collision Device (ACD)-
- Field Trials successfully completed
on Jallandhar-Amritsar section.
- Provision of ACDs on about 1800
routes kilometers and ACD surveys on 1641 route kilometers in
- ACD survey over additional 10,000
route kilometers to be done
- Provision of ACD over additional
1750 kilometers proposed.
- Continuous Track Circuiting, presently
being executed within station limits, to be done in block sections
on selected sections of `A','B' & `C' routes at a cost of
Rs. 425 cr.
- Underwater inspection and computerized
non-destructive testing of bridges to be introduced.
- A modern Bridge Management System
to be introduced
- Coaches being redesigned to improve
their crash worthiness.
- Net expenditure under Special
Railway Safety Fund (SRSF) in 2001-02 Rs. 1434 cr as against
budgeted Rs. 1400 cr.
- In 2002-03, outlay under SRSF
increased by Rs. 100 cr over the Budget Estimates of Rs.2210
- Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd. incorporated
to execute projects of National Rail Vikas Yojana.
- Strengthening of GQ and diagonals
costing about Rs. 8000 cr to be the major part.
- Part loan of US $ 313.6 million
approved by ADB.
- The only remaining mega bridge
over river Kosi approved and included in the budget.
- Jammu-Udhampur targeted for completion
by March 2004 and rail link up to Katra likely to be completed
- Additional funds of Rs. 500 cr
being provided in 2003-04 for Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramula national
- Strategic projects of Luni-Munabao
and Kolayat-Phalodi progressing well; gauge conversion up to
- 1340 kms. of BG lines to be completed
in 2003-04. This includes 225 kms of new lines, 775 kms. of
gauge conversion, 340 kms. doubling.
- Mumbai Urban Transport Project
Phase-I approved-to be completed in 5 years, with a loan component
of Rs. 1613 cr by World Bank.
Annual Plan 2003-04
- Total plan outlay is Rs. 12918
cr including outlay of Rs. 2311 cr through SRSF.
- Funds received from General Exchequer
Rs. 6577 cr, including Rs. 1600 cr contribution to SRSF and
Rs. 433 cr from Central Road Fund.
- Market Borrowings budgeted at
Rs. 3000 cr , internal generation to provide Rs. 2630 cr and
Safety Surcharge collection expected to be Rs. 711 cr.
- Rs. 730 cr to be invested in Rail
Vikas Nigam Ltd., for execution of Rail Vikas Yojana Works under
new lines, doubling, gauge conversion and electrification.
- Expected growth in traffic 25
million tonnes of freight and 3 percent increase in number of
- Ordinary Working Expenses budgeted
at Rs. 32460 cr, i.e., 7 percent increase over Revised Estimate
- Dividend due to the General Revenues
budgeted at Rs. 2930 cr, to be discharged in full.
- 1000 mega watt captive thermal
power plant to be set up at Nabinagar as a JV between Railway
- Drive for planting Ratan Jyot
and extracting bio-diesel in collaboration with Indian Oil Corporation
Review of Financial Performance
- Freight performance better than
revised target by Rs. 235 cr.
- Set back in passenger earnings
in fourth quarter; shortfall of Rs. 204 cr
- Overall, Gross Traffic Receipts
Rs. 118 cr higher than Revised Estimates
- Saving of Rs. 397 cr in Ordinary
Working Expenses over Revised Estimates
- Rs. 1337 cr paid as dividend after
deferring Rs. 1000 cr as envisaged in Budget Estimates.
- Loan of Rs. 249 cr taken from
General Exchequer for Capital Fund fully repaid.
Review of Financial Performance
- Loading exceeded the proportionate
target to end January, 2003. Hence, originating loading target
revised from 510 mt to 515 mt.
- Drop of 3 percent in number of
passengers to end December, 2002.
- Goods earnings likely to exceed
the budget target of Rs. 26,118 cr by Rs. 540 cr.
- Passenger earnings likely to fall
short of the budget target of Rs. 13450 cr by Rs. 720 cr.
- Railway dues, particularly from
State Electricity Boards/Power Houses, likely to go up by Rs.
417 cr, as against clearance of Rs. 50 cr anticipated in Budget
- Overall, Gross Traffic Receipts
expected to be Rs. 671 cr less than Budget Estimates.
- With sustained monitoring, likely
savings of Rs. 850 cr in Ordinary Working Expenses.
- Dividend liability to be discharged
in full, in addition Rs. 50 cr proposed to be cleared from the
Deferred Dividend Liability Account.
- Year 2003-04 dedicated to the
Customers and declared as `Customer Satisfaction Year'
- Several steps relating to safety,
security, punctuality and cleanliness to be taken for greater
satisfaction of customers.
- Recruitment of over 3500 constables
in RPF/RPSF to be done in 2003-04 through RRBs.
- Question Papers for objective
type test for Group `D' recruitment by RRBs to also be set in
the local languages, listed in the VIII Schedule.
Parcels and Luggage.
- Scales for charging of parcel
and luggage to be reduced from 7 to 4.
- Ratio between highest and lowest
rates to be reduced from 8.7 to 6.2.
- Henceforth all types of parcels
including luggage to be charged uniformly at the same rate under
- Scale -R Rajdhani Service-applicable
to Rajdhani Express Trains
- Scale -P Premier Service
- By certain notified Mail Express Trains.
- Scale -S Standard Service
- For other Mail/Express Trains, Shatabdi Express and Parcel
- Scale-E Economy Service-By
Ordinary Passenger Trains.
- Newspapers and Magazines to be
charged at the same rates under lowest Scale-E in all trains.
- All proposals to come into effect
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