Consultative Committee meeting of Ministry of Railways held
New Delhi. Union Railway Minister, Kumari Mamata Banerjee has categorically stated that the budgetary proposals as announced in this year’s Railway Budget will be implemented expeditiously and no slackness on this front will be tolerated. The Railway Minister was speaking at the first meeting of the newly constituted Consultative Committee for the Ministry of Railways for the year 2009 after the constitution of 15th Lok Sabha, held here yesterday. She directed Railway officials to ensure that the proposals are executed in a time bound manner.The Minister said that the meeting of the Consultative Committee provides an opportunity to the Ministry to benefit from the advice and suggestions of the Members of Parliament in relation to policy matters and implementation of programmes and schemes. She assured the Members of the Committee that the genuine suggestions given by them would be examined and implemented wherever feasible and possible. She said that efforts will be made to hold four meetings of this Committee in a calendar year as stipulated. The members complimented the Railway Minister for initiatives like ‘Izzat’ scheme of low priced Monthly Seasoned Tickets for poor people, introduction of ‘Duronto’ Express, improvement in catering services and improvement in punctuality. The Committee Members gave suggestions on issues of passenger amenities, augmentation of train capacity, Railways’ Projects on infrastructure development, project monitoring mechanism etc. On the directions of Railway Minister, the Chairman, Railway Board, Shri S. S. Khurana presented a brief review of the functioning of Indian Railways. He pointed out that Railways have achieved 501.28 MT of freight traffic against a budgeted target of 489.09 MT, which is a 12.19 per cent above the budget target. He said that the estimated plan outlay for the Annual Plan 2009-10 is Rs. 40, 745 crore which is proposed to be funded by Internal Generation (37 per cent ), market borrowings (23 per cent ) and Gross Budgetary Support (40 per cent). Shri Khurana said that Railways have undertaken a number of major initiatives to improve rail infrastructure and production capacity. In this connection, Shri Khurana mentioned projects like Dedicated Freight Corridors, Multi functional complexes, Adarsh Stations, World Class stations, Multimodal Logistic Parks, Auto-hubs etc. He emphasized the need for mobilizing adequate resources to implement various Railway projects. The Consultative Committee for Ministry of Railways consists of 29 Members which include 24 MPs from Lok Sabha and 5 MPs from Rajya Sabha. Besides there is one permanent invitee. The members who attended the meeting included among others S/Shri Satpal Maharaj, Gutha Sukender Reddy, Sanjay Bhoi, Tufani Saroj, Inder Singh Namdhari, Kodikunnil Suresh, Madhu Goud Yaskhi, Poonam Prabhakar, Sidhant Mohapatra, P. Karunakaran, Prabodh Panda, Sameer Bhujbal, Rajiv Ranjan Singh, Rajendra Aggarwal, D. V. Sadananda Gowda, Haribhau Jawle, Dr. Ratna Dey Nag, Smt. Santosh Chowdhary and Smt. Sarika Devendra Singh Baghel from Lok Sabha. Shri Janaradan Dwivedi, from Rajya Sabha and Shri K. C. Venugopal, Permanent Special Invitee were also present.