Rail Budget 2016 highlights: Watch Minister of State Manoj Sinha in conversation with Jai Mrug

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Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu on Thursday presented the budget for 2016-17 in Lok Sabha today but held back from raising passenger fares and freight rates promising to exploit new sources of revenue beyond tariff revenue.

"These are challenging times, toughest time; facing dual headwinds," said the ministe. He said the core objective of the railways is to become engine of economic growth, create employment and provide customer service.

Rail Budget 2016 highlights: Watch Minister of State Manoj Sinha in conversation with Jai Mrug

Union Minister Manoj Sinha. PIB

Here are the highlights:

* Minister sees operating ratio of 92 percent in FY17 as against 90 percent in current year

* Rs 8,720 cr saving in 2015-16 budget in fuel cost like power

* The railways have ramped up capital expenditure to remove the huge backlog and provide for future needs; rate of capital expenditure has increased

* Investment proposed in 2016-17 at Rs 1.21 lakh crore, higher from Rs 1 lakh crore last year.

* Proposes to commission 2,800 km of new tracks in next year

* Outlay for railway electrification increased by 50 percent; 2,000 km route to be electrified next fiscal

* 2000 km rail route to be electrified in 2016-17

* Railways to get Rs 40,000 cr budgetary support from the government

* Railways to increase lower berth quota for senior citizens by 50 percent

* Ajmer, Amritsar, Gaya, Mathura, Nanded, Nashik, Puri, Tirupati, Varanasi, Nagapattinam and other pilgrim stations to be beautified

* Two elevated suburban railway corridors - Churchgate-Virar and CST-Panvel to be constructed in Mumbai; Ring railway covering 21 stations to be revived with state participation.

* India's first railway auto hub in Chennai to be inaugurated soon

* Logistics and warehouse parks to be created on PPP mode

* Station development and re-development, monetisation of land to raise rail revenue from non-freight sources

* Rs 30,000 crore is the loss on subsidising passenger fares, says Railway Minister

* Railways to shift to completely paperless contract system in 2016-17, says minister

* Bar-coded tickets to be introduced at select stations on pilot basis

* E-booking of tickets on concessional passes for journalists introduced

* Cleaning of coach on demand to be introduced; Disabled enabled toilet in 11 Class-A stations this year

* 33 percent reservation to women in reserved quota in Railways will be introduced

* Children menu to be introduced on pilot basis on trains

* North-South, East-West dedicated freight corridor proposed in Railway Budget for 2016-17

* Three direct services - fully air-conditioned Humsafer to travel at 130-km per hour

* Bar-coded tickets to be introduced at select stations on pilot basis

* Overnight double-decker train Uday Express to be introduced on busiest routes, carrying capacity to be 40 percent more

* Propose to start cancellation through 139. Bar-coded tickets will be issued on a pilot basis. This is aimed at reining in the menace of ticket less travel and also making travel hassle-free.

* 400 railway stations to be equipped with wifi, 100 this year

* 124 MPs have committed to contribute from MPLADS for passenger amenities.

With inputs from PTI

Here are the highlights of the speech:

RailBudgetSpeech 2016-17 Highlights

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Updated Date: Feb 25, 2016 16:44:32 IST

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