More structural railway reforms in pipeline: Suresh Prabhu

New Delhi, Oct 31 (IANS) Railway Minister Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu said on Monday that more structural reforms are on the anvil to “keep pace with the changing requirements”.

“Though we are happy about our achievements, we are not satisfied. Our endeavour to improve travel experience for you will continue,” Prabhu said in a letter released by the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC).

He listed several initiatives and plans for the coming years, including mission ‘Zero Accident’, making railway tracks 100 per cent human waste discharge free through the use of bio-toilets and enhancing non-fare revenue through advertising among others.

“Some among many other initiatives which we are working on are redevelopment of stations into world-class modern terminals, a five-year investment plan of Rs 8.56 lakh crore for infrastructure augmentation, more structural reforms and creation of new organisations to keep pace with the changing requirements,” Prabhu added.

“We are giving a big push on enhancing non-fare revenue through advertising and leasing out of spaces, mission ‘Zero Accident’ to further improve safety on Indian railways, improved port connectivity to stimulate trade and two dedicated freight corridors to be commissioned by 2019,” it said.

The other goals listed include connecting all capital cities of northeastern states with broad gauge line by 2020, 1000 MW solar power generation in next five years, establishment of Rail University as a holistic knowledge centre for railways and sale of UTS tickets through hand-held terminals and bar coded tickets.

“While we continue on our journey to transform Indian railways, we seek your cooperation. Together we can make Indian railways, the pride of India,” Prabhu said.