Patna: Bihar has got Rs 4,407 crore in the railway budget for the financial year 2018-19, a 19 per cent increase over the Rs 3,696 crore it was given in 2017-18.
The increase is also more in comparison to its neighbours, NDA-ruled Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand, whose rail budget allocations show a rise of 14 and eight per cent, respectively.
Of the amount sanctioned for Bihar, the East Central Railway (ECR) zone with headquarters at Hajipur will get Rs 4,014 crore. The zone incorporates some portions of Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh as well.
“In the total money allotted for us, Rs 2,652 crore is for expenditure on various railway infrastructure projects during the coming financial year. Of it, Rs 637 crore is for laying new railway lines, Rs 1,595 crore is for doubling the existing tracks, and Rs 420 crore for converting metre gauge to broad gauge tracks,” ECR additional general manager Anoop Kumar said.
Kumar added that Rs 70 crore will be spent on passenger facilities and Rs 41 crore on traffic safety. ECR will also spend Rs 141 crore on the construction of railway over-bridges and under-bridges and Rs 57 crore on level crossings.
No new trains have been announced during the budget, as per the policy decision taken last year. “ECR will get new trains, but they would be announced later,” the officer said.
Kumar said five new projects have been approved for the zone. These include electrification of railway lines between Muzaffarpur and Sitamarhi (65km at a cost of Rs 71 crore), Dildarnagar and Tarighat (19km at a cost of Rs 16 crore), and Daurabh (Madhepura) and Purnea (77km at a cost of Rs 81 crore).
A 7.64-km-long bypass railway line between Darbhanga and Shisho halt will be laid at a cost of Rs 130 crore as part of the doubling of railway tracks, and a new, 35-km-long railway line connecting Parasnath-Madhuban-Giridih will be built at a cost of Rs 131 crore.
According to the budget, 600 stations across the country are to be developed with world-class facilities. ECR will send suggestions for around 50 stations in Bihar.
The details came out a week after Union finance minister Arun Jaitley presented the budget. The general budget, since last year, includes the railway budget as well.
Courtesy: The Telegraph