Railways should rationalise tariffs: CAG
"There is heavy cross-subsidisation from freight services to passenger services... percentage of freight earnings used to subsidise the losses on passenger and other coaching services ranged between 15.80 percent and 34.32 percent during 2007-08 to 2009-10," said the latest CAG report on railways tabled in parliament Tuesday.
"It is essential that railways increases its market share in bulk commodities where it has an inherent competitive advantage," said the report.
According to the CAG report for 2010-11, the surplus earned by the railways was Rs.1,404.89 crore and the accumulated fund balances were substantially depleted.
This, said the report, indicated a continued poor financial performance by the railways and posed a risk for future sustainability.
The CAG report also expressed concern over the increasing dependency of the railways on the gross budgetary support due to shrinkage of internal resources.
It also suggested that the transporter should wind up unviable and loss-making projects.
"It is important for the railways to review all capital works in progress and take expeditious decision with regard to closure of projects especially unremunerative lines, where there is road connectivity and where the progress with the projects is no longer as valid. There is a need to focus more on viable projects," said the report.
Amid a series of corruption scams, and under extreme pressure from an opposition that won't settle any less than seek the Prime Minister's resignation, the UPA-II completed its 9th anniversary and released its last report card before the general elections 2014.
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