Friday, March 1, 2024

Railways will play a vital role in India’s growth journey: Vaishnaw – N.F Times

New Delhi: Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw on Friday said railways will play a vital role in India’s growth journey as he conferred the ‘Ati Vishisht Rail Seva Puraskar’ (AVRSP) on 100 railway employees from various zones, divisions, production units, and railway PSUs all over the country for their outstanding services.

He also presented 21 Shields for promoting best practices among Railway employees at the 68th Railway Week Central Function, organised at Bharat Mandapam at Pragati Maidan here.

The Chairperson & CEO and Members of Railway Board, General Managers of Zonal Railways and heads of railways’ production and PSUs were present on the occasion.

In her welcome remarks, Railway Board Chairperson Jaya Varma Sinha said that Indian Railways has achieved remarkable feats in the past few years, such as 34 new Vande Bharat trains for transporting passengers, and 1,309 stations’ redevelopment under Amrit Bharat which will improve overall experience and save time for passengers.

About Rail safety, she said that advanced technology is being used to improve overall safety, including Kavach which is being implemented with speed and scale.

She said there are lots of novel initiatives for the future which they will implement, including Mission 3000 million tonnes of freight, increasing speed in GQGD, and all unconnected regions to be connected soon, including the northeast and Jammu and Kashmir.

Vaishnaw said the transformation work is going on at full pace in railways under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“More electrification has been done in 9.5 years than in the past 40 years. The big picture behind this is when in 2015 the Prime Minister merged the railways budget with general budget, interest or capital charge had to be paid on the rail grant and it removed all financial hindrances for the railways. Lack of Investment, which was the biggest problem for railways, is now a thing of the past.

“People’s expectations with the railways is being fulfilled now. Prime Minister often says this is the golden period of railways and you all are the strength behind this. This commitment of all railway employees makes everyone feel proud that we are all doing this for our nation. Railway infrastructure is being developed at record speed and scale. Several new things are happening which is helping achieve a strategic goal,” he said.

About the massive potential savings in logistics costs, Vaishnaw said: “Such transportation, if done by road, involves higher costs along with fuel cost. As per an estimate, there will be 3000 million tonnes of new cargo, and if railway gets half of it then it will potentially save 16,000 crore litre of fuel and Rs 1,28,000 crore will be saved through this which will be a big achievement and saving for the nation.”

He also said: “We are all lucky that we have a Prime Minister who is so emotionally attached with railways. Prime Minister has often shared so many experiences with me, that it can only come from someone who has in-depth knowledge about the functioning of the Railways.

“He has so much commitment towards the railways, and all railway employees are part of a very committed, dedicated team which will continue to work towards development of the nation. You are all contributing highly to the building of the nation and I hope you will continue working like this with the same efficiency, motivation and dedication in the future too.”


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