The interim budget, which includes the allocations to Railways, was presented on the floor of the Parliament on 01 February 2024. Ashwini Vaishnaw, Hon’ble Minister of Railways, Communication and Electronic & Information Technology held a virtual press conference on 01 February 2024 from New Delhi. The conference highlighted the Railway budget allocations for Telangana and Andhra Pradesh States. Saurabh Prasad Divisional Railway Manager, Waltair Division along with ADRM (operations) and other senior Railway officials participated in the press meet at DRM Conference Hall.
Ashwini stated that Indian Railways has been allocated Rs. 2,52,000 crore for the year 2024-25. He informed that the focus is on the Hon’ble Prime Minister’s vision of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas’. Furthermore, he stated that efforts are being made to increase the capacity of Railways. As part of the same, three Major Economic Railway Corridors projects will be implemented and as a result, 40,000 Km of tracks will be laid in the next 6-8 years, he said.
Highlights of the Railway Budget of Andhra Pradesh State:
Ashwini Vaishnaw, Hon’ble Minister informed that the total budgetary allocation for Railways in Andhra Pradesh is a staggering amount of Rs. 9,138 crores for the year 2024-25. He stated that the combined budget allocation for Andhra Pradesh and Telangana States between the years 2009-14 was only Rs. 886 crores on average. The Budget allocations to Andhra Pradesh have been witnessing sustained increases with the current year’s allocation being almost ten times the average allocation done during 2009-14, he said.
Further, the Hon’ble Union Minister stated that the total investment for the development of Railways in Andhra Pradesh is Rs. 68,059 crores. He informed that 97% of electrification has been completed in the state. He stated that 246 Km of Rail track is being laid in the region every year as compared to just 70 Km per year during 2009-14. To facilitate the commuters, 709 RoBs & RuBs have been constructed, he stated. The Hon’ble Minister informed that over 109 One Station One Product stalls have been set up at Railway stations across the state. He recalled the beautiful toys of Etikoppaka at Visakhapatnam Railway Station which was set up under the One Station One Product Scheme. Around 72 Railway stations in AP State are being upgraded as part of the Amrit Bharat station scheme, he added.
Other Highlights of the Budget on Railways:
Three major economic railway corridor programs will be implemented. These are Energy, mineral, and cement corridors, Port connectivity corridors, and High-traffic density corridors. The projects have been identified under the PM Gati Shakti for enabling multi-modal connectivity. They will improve logistics efficiency and reduce costs. The resultant decongestion of the high-traffic corridors will also help in improving the operations of passenger trains, resulting in safety and higher travel speed for passengers. Together with dedicated freight corridors, these three economic corridor programmes will accelerate GDP growth and reduce logistic costs. Additionally, Forty thousand normal rail bogies will be converted to the Vande Bharat standards to enhance the safety, convenience, and comfort of passengers
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