Jaitley moots big rail reforms

Wednesday, Feb 1, 2017,12:01 IST By metrovaartha A A A

New Delhi | In the Union Budget presented today Finance Minister Arun Jaitley proposed big investment and reforms in railways. This is the first time railway gets no separate budget presentation as was the practice since independence.
FM Proposed to invest Rs 1.31 lakh crore in railways. Centre to fund 55k cr out of 1.31 lk cr railway infra budget. Rail Sanraksha Fund will be created with corpus of 1lac crore for rail safety. Will take legislative reforms to simplify labour laws.
Outcome-based monetary measures to SC, ST by NITI Aayog. Allocation to scheduled castes upped to Rs 52,393 crore.
Govt committed to take structural reform in medical education, practice. New rules regarding medical devices will be formulated; will attract investment in sector, will reduce cost of the devices. Propose to amend drug rules to ensure drugs available at reasonable prices.

Service charges on e-tickets booked via IRCTC to be withdrawn. New Metro Rail policy to be announced; will open up new job possibilities.
Total capital development outlay for Railway at 1.3 lk cr. To commission 3,500 km of railway tracks in 2018. Railway Throughput to be enhanced by 10%. Propose to feed 7000 solar railway station in medium term. Railways to implement end-to-end solutions for some commodities. IRCTC, IRCON & IRFC to be listed on stock exchanges.
Other proposals
* Pilot project for Aadhar cards containing health details for senior citizens. Aadhaar-based smart cards to be introduced for senior citizens.

* National Highway allocation at Rs 64,000 crore. 2000 km of coastal roads have been identified for development. Bharat Net allocation at Rs 10,000 crore. Transport sector allocated Rs 2.41 lakh cr.
* To take up second phase of solar power development for additional 20,000 mw.