The aim of the Government is to make Indian Railways the growth engine of the economy. The emphasis is on continued capacity enhancement through accelerated investments and execution. Five measures relating to Railways have been highlighted in Budget speech.
- Setting up a large solar power capacity alongside the rail tracks, on the land owned by the railways. A proposal is under consideration.
- Four station re-development projects and operation of 150 passenger trains would be done through PPP mode. The process of inviting private participation is underway.
- More Tejas type trains will connect iconic tourist destinations.
- High speed train between Mumbai to Ahmedabad would be actively pursued.
- 148 km long Bengaluru Suburban transport project at a cost of
Rs 18600 crore, would have fares on metro model. Central Government would provide 20% of equity and facilitate external assistance up to 60% of the project cost.
To this end, Government has increased investment and introduced modern technology while focusing on safety, speed and service to passengers. Capex of Indian Railways for 2020-21 has been pegged at an all time high of Rs 1,61,042 crore. Capex for the year 2019-20 is Rs 1,56,352 crore (RE), which is 17.2% higher than the previous year. The target of new lines, gauge conversion and doubling/tripling etc. for 2020-21 is 3750 Route Kms against 3150 Route Kms in 2019-20. Electrification of the entire Broad Gauge network is to be completed by 2023-24. In 2020-21, Electrification of 6000 Route Kms has been targeted. In the Budget Estimate (BE) 2020-21, the freight loading of Indian Railways is kept at 1265 MT which is 42 MT (i.e 3.4%) incremental over Revised Estimate (RE) 2019-20. Average freight lead has been kept at 553 km, and originating passengers kept at 8792 million.
Railways now plan to induct latest technology for Signalling & Telecommunication system. Under modernization plan of Railway signaling system, it has been decided to implement Centralized Traffic Control (CTC) system on Indian Railways. This will increase operational efficiency. In first phase CTC will be implemented on 1830 KMs over 8 Zonal Railways on sections provided with Automatic Block Signalling system. Further, in the second phase, CTC will be implemented over balance 8 zonal Railways alongwith Automatic Block Signalling system. Government has initiated the upgradation of the decades old signalling system into an Automatic Train Protection System, which will be a mix of proven international technology as well as indigenously developed systems with an impetus to Make in India.
Facilitating private participation in Railwaysto build a seamless national cold supply chain for perishables, inclusive of milk, meat and fish, the Indian Railways will set up a “Kisan Rail” – through PPP arrangements. There shall be refrigerated coaches in Express and Freight trains as well.
Capital Expenditure, Revenue Receipts, Revenue Expenditure & Operating Ratio of Indian Railways is as follows:-
Capital Expenditure of Indian Railways:
- Capital Expenditure Rs. 1,61,042 cr which is higher than Revised Estimate (RE) 2019-20 by Rs. 4,690.03 cr. This is 2.99% higher than RE 2019-20.
- Gross Budgetary Support (GBS) (excluding Nirbhaya Fund) at Rs. 70,000 cr includes Rs. 5,000 cr towards Rashtriya Rail Sanraksha Kosh (RRSK) and Rs. 18,500 cr as IR’s share from Central Road and Infrastructure Fund (CRIF). GBS in 2020-21 is 3.19% more than RE 2019-20.
- Nirbhaya Fund at Rs. 250 cr.
- Internal Resources at Rs. 7,500 cr (Depreciation Reserve Fund (DRF) -Rs. 1,000 cr, Development Fund (DF) -Rs. 1,500 cr and RRSK-Rs. 5,000 cr).
- Extra Budgetary Resources (EBR)-IRFC at Rs. 30,000 cr.
- Extra Budgetary Resources-Institutional Finance (EBR-IF) at Rs. 28,000 cr.
- Extra Budgetary Resources (EBR)-PPP at Rs. 25,292 cr.
Revenue Receipts of Indian Railways:
- Passenger earnings at Rs. 61,000 cr.
- Goods earnings kept at Rs. 1,47,000 cr.
- Other Coaching earnings and Sundry other earnings kept at Rs. 6,500 cr and Rs. 11,013 cr respectively.
- Gross Traffic Receipts are thus kept at Rs. 2,25,613 cr. This is 9.6% above RE 2019-20.
- Miscellaneous receipts kept at Rs. 300 cr
- Total receipts of Indian Railways are thus kept at Rs. 2,25,913 crore.
Revenue Expenditure of Indian Railways:
- Ordinary Working Expenses (OWE) kept at Rs. 1,62,753 cr.
- Appropriation to DRF kept at Rs. 800 cr.
- Appropriation to Pension Fund from Revenue kept at Rs. 53,160 cr.
- Miscellaneous expenditure kept at Rs. 2,700 cr.
- Thus the total revenue expenditure of Indian Railways has been kept at Rs. 2,19,413 crore.
Operating Ratio of Indian Railways:
Operating Ratio comes to 96.28% against 97.46% in RE 2019-20. The ‘Net’ of revenue over expenditure thus comes to Rs. 6,500 cr which has been appropriated to DF (Rs. 1,500 crore), and RRSK (Rs. 5,000 crore) for supplementing Indian Railways’ capital expenditure.