Target set by Lalu Prasad unrealistically high: Banerjee

July 3rd, 2009 - 5:21 pm ICT by IANS  

Mamata Banerjee New Delhi, July 3 (IANS) Taking a dig at her predecessor Lalu Prasad, Railways Minister Mamata Banerjee Friday said the target set by him for the railways in the interim budget was “unrealistically high”.
“Based on the reviews, it is very clear that the unrealistically high targets set in the interim budget are not sustainable and warrant a mid course correction,” Banerjee said while presenting her ministry’s budget for the current fiscal in the Lok Sabha.

In the interim rail budget, Lalu Prasad had set a target of earning Rs.59,059 crore from goods and services and Rs.25,000 crore from passengers.

The interim budget also said the railways could earn Rs.3,000 crore from coaching services and Rs.6,000 crore from other sundry services.

The gross traffic receipts have been projected at Rs.93,159 crore.

The freight loading fell short of the target of 850 million tonnes in 2008-09 and the plan to earn revenues from commercial utilisation of surplus railway land did not materialise.

The prime cause of this shortfall has been economic slowdown, Banerjee said.

“This has forced me to review the targets set for the 2009-10 in the interim budget.”

“I have now set more realistic targets for 2009-10 in the main budget based on the continuing trend of recession in the manufacturing sector and exports,” she added.

Banerjee has set the freight traffic target at 882 million tonnes for the current fiscal.

She has projected the goods earning at Rs.58,525 crore and passengers earning at Rs.24,309 crore.

The gross traffic receipts have been estimated at Rs.88,419 crore, an increase of Rs.8,557 crore from the last budget.

The minister has also revised the target of Sundry earnings at Rs.2,760 crore.

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