Passengers’ safety, security focused on for the first time: GCCI


 Mr Manguirish Pai  Raiker, president of  Goa  Chamber of Commerce and  Industry welcomed  the  Union Railway  Budget  for 2013-14  presented  by  the  railway  Minister Mr. Pawan Kumar Bansal in Parliament  on Tuesday. 
Railway  is  the  main mode  of long and  short  distance  travel  for millions  of  middle class  and  poor  travellers  in  India.  Unfortunately  over  the  years  there  was  neglect  of  these  passengers’ safety  and  security  and  for  the  first  time  these  issues  have  found  centre stage  and  proactive  measures   have  been  taken  to  increase  the  safety  and  security  of  passengers.  Elimination  of  over  10,000 level  crossings, introduction  of  advance  warning  on  automatic signalling  systems,   rigorous  trials  of  indigenously  developed Train Collision Avoidance  System, stronger  and  longer  rails, introduction of fast self propelled  accident  relief  trains, fire  and smoke  detection  systems  and  provision  of  fire  extinguishers in  coaches, additional  companies  of RPF with  105 vacancies  reserved  for  women  are  some  of the  laudable  initiatives  taken  by  the  Minister that  will  go  a  long  way in  improving  safety  and  security  of  passengers, especially women  which   is  the  top priority of the Indian Railways.
We  also  welcome  a  lot of initiatives  taken  to  improve  the  quality  of  service  to  the  passengers  and  the  introduction  of  additional  IT  services. 
Since  Railway  fares  were  recently  increased, we  were  not  expecting  any additional  hike in  passenger  and  goods  freight  fares  this  time.  But  the  desire  to  implement  the  concept  of  “Fuel Adjustment Component”  linked  to  fuel  prices  is  an  imaginative  step.
Steps  to  undertake  massive  infrastructural  improvement   and  capacity enhancements are also  welcome  and  will  provide a lot  of  employment opportunities.
Overall we find that the Rail budget presented on Tuesday is quite  pragmatic. We hope that Budget provisions are implemented in the same spirit.  [NT]