Modi directs NITI Aayog to help Rlys utilise safety fund

Modi directs NITI Aayog to help Rlys utilise safety fund

With the Indian Railways finding it difficult to chalk out a “safety plan” on its own, Prime Minister Narednra Modi has directed NITI Aayog to help the national transport monolith in drafting a detailed roadmap for implementation of the Rs 1 lakh crore safety fund envisioned in the Budget for 2017-18.

Following the instructions, Railway Board Chairman AK Mittal has requested NITI Aayog Member (Infrastructure) Bibek Debroy to do the needful. Interestingly, it was Dr Debroy’s report that had led to the discontinuation of the separate Rail Budget from this year

“The NITI Aayog, which will be assisted by officials of the Ministry of Railways, would lay the path for a major safety overhaul in the next five years by reaching out to professionals outside the government,” a senior NITI Aayog official said.

Incidentally, ahead of the Budget for 2017-18 and before announcing the Rashtriya Rail Suraksha Kosh (RRSK), the Finance Ministry had completed discussions with top officials of the Ministry of Railways over the broader scope of works to be included as part of the fund. In his letter to Dr Debroy, Mittal said, “…we shall be grateful if you could help us in the task of identifying critical areas and guiding principles for deployment of RRSK funds for bringing out perceptible improvement in safety scenario over Indian Railways.”

The Finance Ministry has identified key areas which could be included for the implementation of the RRSK fund over the next five years. Read More…

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