Private sector investment to boost growth in Railways: Rajen Gohain, MoS Railways
The Department of Railways has opened its door for private sector investment for providing better technology and logistic support in order to overhaul passenger services on the whole, informed Rajen Gohain, Minister of State for Railway at an ASSOCHAM event on “Invest Rail” held in New Delhi.
The delegates highlighted the potential of railways to "boom given the department procures the right investments and incentives”. At the same time, there is a need to address the silos that exist between the Centre, state and local bodies.
The conference also highlighted “communication between different departments of railways” as one of the focus areas requiring urgent attention.
The event noted that privatising of operations is necessary, a process that requires gradual implementation due to its large setup.
The Railways Ministry is presently looking at private sector investments in railway infrastructure for which they are targeting over 400 station building projects in order to seek high return on investment.
The minister also said that the department needs to invest close to nearly Rs. 1 trillion into new technology to become “a world class transporter”. He then talked about railways being the right forum for addressing issues such as reduced global warming, volatile fuel costs, lower energy consumption, reducing urban congestion, less land usage, servicing an aging population and making transportation accessible to all ages across all income brackets.
The speakers who spoke at the event included H.E. Mr Cho Hyun, Ambassador, Embassy of Republic of Korea; Jean-Marc Fenet, Minister Counsellor & Head Regional Economic Department, Embassy of France; J.P. Gadia, Managing Director, Resurgent India Limited; Dr A.K. Agarwal, Chairman, Rail Transport Council; S.C. Aggarwal, Chairman, India-EU Business Council and D.S. Rawat, Secretary General, ASSOCHAM.