Patna: RJD chief and UPA-I railway minister Lalu Prasad on Tuesday said Sadananda Gowda’s rail budget was “a gazette notification to privatize the Indian Railways”.
“The NDA government has literally planned to sell off the railways to private parties as it has announced several projects under PPP mode and allowed FDI in several schemes of the railways,” Prasad told reporters. “The BJP is trying to return favours to the corporate world from where it took funds for the parliamentary elections,” Lalu added, ruing Bihar did not get its due in the budget.
Joining his party chief, Abdul Bari Siddiqui said the railways disappointed Bihar. “Never in the past has Bihar felt so ignored by the railways. All ongoing railway projects in the state have been allowed to hang fire by the minister,” he said. But BJP chief whip in the assembly Arun Kumar Sinha praised the railway budget saying Bihar had got three new trains. The railway minister has also promised better safety and decided to appoint 4,000 women in RPF, he said.
BJP leader Sushil Modi hailed the budget and said Bihar would benefit from five new Jan Sadharan Express trains out of which three would originate from Bihar. Describing the budget as pro-poor, Modi said over Rs 450 crore has been proposed for the Digha-Sonepur and Munger river bridges as well as the Kosi rail overbridge. Under the religious circuit railway connectivity, all Sikh, Buddhist, Hindu and Sufi religious centres would be connected now, the former deputy CM said.