Dinesh Trivedi, presenting his first rail budget, had his task cut out. His focus, he said, was three-pronged: "Safety, safety, safety." Following very closely behind were consolidation, decongestion and modernization.
So aided by poetry, quotable quotes and many mentions of his party chief and predecessor Mamata Banerjee, the railway minister today proposed the first hike in passenger fares in nine years and the highest ever annual plan outlay for the railways at Rs 60,100 crore, of which Rs 15,000 crore he said, would be from market borrowing.
The passenger fare hike is a bold step. The rail minister has proposed a 30 paisa per km hike for AC first class travel, a 15 paisa per km hike for AC second tier and a 10 paisa per km hike for AC third tier. Platform tickets would now cost Rs 5.
"The proposal to rationalize the fares will cause minimum impact on the common man," the minister said. Passenger fares are likely to add Rs 36,073 crore to the railway's revenue in the next fiscal.
The hike in fares snaps a populist trend to help mend the finances of a creaking network that is a bottleneck for growth in Asia's third-largest economy. The refusal by successive ministers to raise fares has strained the ministry's finances, which in turn has sapped the amount of money available to lay new track and modernise services.
*Passenger fares to be hiked by 2 paise per km for suburban and ordinary second class travel; 3 paise per km for mail/ express second class; 5 paise per km for sleeper class; 10 paise per km for AC chair car/AC 3-tier and First Class; 15 paise per km for AC 2-tier and 30 paise per km for AC 1-tier.
*Minimum fare and platform tickets to cost Rs 5.
* The open discharge toilets on trains to be replaced with green (bio) toilets.
*Steps to improve cleanliness and hygiene on trains and stations within six months. A special housekeeping body will be set up to take care of both stations and trains.
*New passenger services include escalators at major stations; alternative train accommodation for wait-listed passengers, laundry services, AC lounges, coin/currency operated ticket vending machines.
*On board passenger displays indicating next halt station and expected arrival time to be introduced.
*Introduction of regional cuisine; Book-a-meal scheme to provide meals through SMS or email.
*Specially designed coaches for differently-abled persons to be provided in each Mail/Express trains.
*Wellness programme for railway staff at work places.
*Institution of Rail Khel Ratna Award for 10 rail sports-persons every year.
*75 mew Express trains to be introduced, along with 21 new passenger services, nine DEMU services and 8 MEMU services trains.
*Route of 39 trains to be extended and frequency of 23 trains to be increased.
Here's the full list of new express and passenger trains announced in today's Rail Budget 2012-13.
1. Kamakhya-Lokmanya Tilak (T) AC Express (Weekly) via Katihar, Mughalsarai, Itarsi
2. Secunderabad-Shalimar AC Express (Weekly) via Vijayawada
3. Bandra (T)-Bhuj AC Express (Tri-Weekly)
4. Delhi Sarai Rohilla-Udhampur AC Express (Tri-Weekly) via Ambala, Jalandhar
5. Coimbatore-Bikaner AC Express (Weekly) via,Roha,Vasai Road,Ahmedabad,Jodhpur
6. Kakinada-Secunderabad AC Express (Tri-weekly)
7. Yesvantpur-Kochuveli AC Express ( Weekly)
8. Chennai-Bangalore AC Double-decker Express (Daily)
9. Habibganj-Indore AC Double-decker Express (Daily)
10. Howrah-New Jalpaiguri Shatabdi Express (6 days a week) via Malda Town
11. Kamakhya-Tezpur Intercity Express (Daily)
12. Tiruchchirappalli-Tirunelveli Intercity Express (Daily) via Madurai,Virudunagar
13. Jabalpur-Singrauli Intercity Express (Daily) via New Katni Jn.
14. Bidar-Secunderabad Intercity Express (6 days a week)
15. Kanpur-Allahabad Intercity Express (Daily)
16. Chhapra-Manduadih Intercity Express (Daily) via Phephna, Rasra, Mau, Aunrihar
17. Ranchi-Dumka Intercity Express (Daily) via Deoghar
18. Barbil-Chakradharpur Intercity Express (Daily) via Dongoaposi, Jhinkpani
19. Secunderabad-Belampalli Intercity Express(Daily) via Kazipet
20. New Jalpaiguri – New Cooch Behar Intercity Express (5 days a week)
21. Ahmedabad-Ajmer Intercity Express (Daily)
22. Dadar (T)- Tirunelveli Express (Weekly) via Roha, Coimbatore,Erode
23. Visakhapatnam-Chennai Express (Weekly)
24. Visakhapatnam-Sai Nagar Shirdi Express (Weekly) via Vijayawada,Manmad
25. Indore-Yesvantpur Express (Weekly) via Itarsi,Narkher,Amravati,Akola,Kacheguda
26. Ajmer-Haridwar Express (Tri-weekly) via Delhi
27. Amravati-Pune Express (Bi-weekly) via Akola, Purna and Latur
28. Kacheguda-Madurai Express (Weekly) via Dharmavaram,Pakala,Jolarpettai
29. Bikaner-Puri Express (Weekly) via Jaipur,Kota,Katni Murwara, Jharsuguda, Sambalpur
30. Secunderabad-Darbhanga Express (Bi-weekly) via Ballarshah, Jharsuguda, Rourkela, Ranchi, Jhajha
31. Bilaspur-Patna Express (Weekly) via Asansol, Jhajha
32. Howrah-Raxual Express (Bi-weekly) via Asansol, Jhajha, Barauni
33. Bhubaneswar-Bhawanipatna Link Express (Daily) via Vizianagaram
34. Puri-Yesvantpur Garib Rath Express (Weekly) via Visakhapatnam, Guntur
35. Sai Nagar Shirdi-Pandharpur Express (Tri-weekly) via Kurduwadi
36. Bhubaneswar-Tirupati Express (Weekly) via Visakhapatnam,Gudur
37. Visakhapatnam-Lokmanya Tilak(T) Express (Weekly) via Titlagarh,Raipur
38. Howrah-Lalkuan Express (Weekly) via Mughalsarai,Varanasi,Lucknow
39. Kolkata-Jaynagar Express (Weekly) via Asansol,Jhajha,Barauni
40. Dibrugarh-Kolkata Express (Weekly)
41. Firozpur-Sriganganagar Express (Daily) via Fazilka,Abohar
42. Jaipur-Secunderabad Express (Weekly) via Nagda, Bhopal, Narkher, Amravati, Akola
43. Okha-Jaipur Express (Weekly) via Palanpur,Ajmer
44. Adilabad-Hazur Sahib Nanded Express (Daily) via Mudkhed
45. Shalimar-Chennai Express (Weekly)
46. Mysore-Sai Nagar Shirdi Express (Weekly) via Bangalore,Dharmavaram,Bellary
47. Valsad-Jodhpur Express (Weekly) via Palanpur,Marwar
48. Porbander-Secunderabad Express (Weekly) via Viramgam,Vasai Road
49. Bandra (T)-Delhi Sarai Rohilla Express (Weekly) via Palanpur, Phulera
50. Hapa-Madgaon Express (Weekly) via Vasai Road,Roha
51. Bikaner-Bandra (T) Express (Weekly) via Jodhpur,Marwar,Ahmedabad
52. Ahmedabad-Gorakhpur Express (Weekly) via Palanpur,Jaipur,Mathura,Farrukhabad, Kanpur
53. Durg-Jagdalpur Express (Tri-Weekly) via Titlagarh
54. Mannargudi – Tirupati Express (Tri-Weekly) viaThiruvarur,Villupuram,Katpadi
55. Gandhidham-Bandra (T) Express (Weekly) via Morbi
56. Kota-Hanumangarh Express (Daily) via Jaipur,Degana,Bikaner
57. Jhansi-Mumbai Express (Weekly) via Gwalior, Maksi, Nagda
58. Secunderabad-Nagpur Express (Triweekly) via Kazipet
59. Kanpur-Amritsar Express (Weekly) via Farrukhabad, Bareilly
60. Chappra-Lucknow Express (Tri-Weekly) via Masrakh,Thawe,Padrauna
61. Karimnagar-Tirupati Express (Weekly) via Pedapalli
62. Anandvihar-Haldia Express(Weekly) via Mughalsarai, Gomoh, Purulia
63. Barrackpore-Azamgarh Express (Weekly) via Jhajha, Ballia, Mau
64. Indore-Rewa Express ( Tri-weekly) via Bina
65. Running of independent train between Jabalpur-Hazrat Nizamuddin by delinking from 12405/12406 Bhusawal- Hazrat Nizamuddin and 12409/12410 Raigarh-Nizamuddin Gondwana Express
66. Darbhanga-Ajmer Express (Weekly) via Raxaul, Sitapur, Bareilly, Kasganj, Mathura
67. Solapur-Yesvantpur Express (Tri-weekly) via Gulbarga
68. Chennai-Puri Express (Weekly)
69. Hyderabad-Ajmer Express (Weekly)via Manmad, Itarsi, Ratlam
70. Asansol-Chennai Express (Weekly) via Purulia, Sambalpur,Vizianagaram
71. Shalimar-Bhuj Express (Weekly) via Bilaspur, Katni, Bhopal
72. Amritsar- Hazur Sahib Nanded Express (Weekly)
73. Santragachi-Ajmer Express (Weekly) via Kharagpur, Chandil, Barkakana, Katni, Kota
74. Malda Town-Surat Express ( Weekly) via Rampur Hat, Asansol, Nagpur
75. Dwarka-Somnath Express (Daily)