Rail budget reflects government’s commitment to poor: PM

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New Delhi, Feb 25 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday that the Railway Budget lays emphasis on investment and information technology and shows the government’s commitment to the welfare of poorer sections of society.

The prime minister said this year’s Railway Budget builds on the budget presented by Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu last year.

“In the last year, we have seen a lot of success and this budget is an effort to further improve on this,” the prime minister said.

“The last two budgets focussed on cleanliness, passenger amenities and technological upgradation. Also, the railway projects were defined through commissioning and not completion. I think this is a paradigm shift in the policy,” Modi added.

“Along with IT, investment has been given importance,” he added.

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Modi said the proposal to introduce Antyodaya Express and to add two to four Deen Dayalu coaches reflects the “government’s commitment to the welfare of the poor”.

Prabhu, presenting the budget in the Lok Sabha, proposed to introduce the Antyodaya Express, a long-distance, fully unreserved, superfast train service for the common man to be operated on dense routes.

He also said that two to four Deen Dayalu coaches will be added to some long-distance trains for unreserved travel to enhance the carrying capacity.

“Concrete steps have been taken to increase the connectivity in backward areas of the country, especially in the northeast. Besides, the perennial problem of carrying capacity of the railways has also been addressed,” the prime minister said.

Modi said that the railway budget presented by Suresh Prabhu had made a “quantum leap” with huge investment as compared to the last five budgets of the previous government.

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“This budget would turn out to be an important link in nation building. More importantly, state governments are also going to participate in the development and expansion of the railways,” Modi said.

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