West Bengal’s industry welcomes railway budget

February 25th, 2011 - 10:22 pm ICT by IANS  

Mamata Banerjee Kolkata, Feb 25 (IANS) Hailing the budget presented by Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee Friday for not increasing freight and passenger fares, West Bengal’s industrialists said it was ideal for helping in overall development of industry.RPG Group Vice-Chairman Sanjiv Goenka said: “The minister certainly deserves our thanks for courageously withstanding the ever-increasing pressure on costs and finding ways for employing resources without revising freight rates and passenger fares and over-burdening the people, business or industry.”

Particularly commendable was the accent on safety, modernisation, capacity expansion, construction of new lines and low interest fund-raising, he said. The dedicated freight corridor will help in expediting movement of goods and it will assist exports, he added.

Welcoming the railway budget, Ruia Group chairman Pawan K. Ruia said: “It was refreshing to learn that the honourable minister wishes to set up a rail industrial park at Jellingham. The proposed cluster of diverse industrial units, whose output will be consumed by the railways, will be extremely helpful for the overall development of industry in the state as well as in the country.” Ruia Group owns Jessop & Co Ltd which produces railway wagons and coaches.

“The good news for wagon and rake manufacturers will be the huge expansion she has proposed in the suburban rail lines in Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Secunderabad and Delhi,” he added.

Umesh Chowdhary, vice chairman and managing director of another wagon maker Titagarh Wagons, said a big positive was that the “freight loading target that was set has been more or less achieved and the target for 2011-12 has been increased to 990 million tonnes”.

“While this is an achievable target, the railways will have to add on sufficient rolling stock to its fleet to meet the target,” said Chowdhary.

“In particular, sufficient quantity of wagons will have to be procured. This would, in turn, be beneficial to the industry at large,” he added.

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