24 July :Despite annual escalation in Wholesale Price Index and steadily increasing cost of inputs by way of rising fuel prices and increasing cost of men and material, the cost of transportation for passengers and also for freight for majority of commodities have been pegged at almost the same levels by Indian Railways thereby indicating an actual reduction in real money value terms.
In case of passenger fare, there has rather been reduction in certain classes. For the past four years, Railways have been successfully discharging their social obligations along with functioning as a viable commercial organization.
Salient features of passenger fare revision during the past four years are as follow:-
· No increase in Passenger Fare.
· Passenger Fare in 1st AC decreased by 23.18% from 1.4.2005
· Passenger Fare in 2nd AC decreased by 13.15% from 1.4.2005
· No change in 3rd AC and Sleeper Class.
· Fares of ordinary 2nd Class decreased in last 3 years.
· Fares in newly designed high capacity Sleeper, Chair Car and 3rd AC class coaches will also be reduced.
Despite recent diesel price hike, the Indian Railways did not pass Railways’ additional financial burden on its users – both Railway passengers and freight customers. Indian Railways consume 227 crore litres (2.27 billion litres) diesel per annum and an increase in the price of diesel by Rs. 3/- per litre cost Railways Rs. 681 crore annually and Rs. 560 crore for the remaining ten months of the current financial year. Railways decided to absorb the diesel price hike by improving its productivity, efficiency and volumes.