Western Railway (WR) plans to increase the number of ATMs at its stations by renting out more space to banks, a step aimed at shoring up earnings. The move comes on the heels of a dip in earnings of WR in the April-August period by 10 per cent.
WR earned Rs 222.70 crore in this period against a target of Rs 249.59 crore set by the Railway Board.
One way to boost revenue, WR officials said, was by increasing ATM services across stations and railway colonies.
“We have identified 88 more sites across stations and colonies for renting out to banks to set up ATMs. Tenders will be floated either by the end of this month or October,” said an official.
WR also plans to increase parking spaces at 20 more stations to increase revenue. “About 6,000 sqm of land has been identified at places including Dahisar, Mira Road and Naigaon,” added the official.
Officials attributed the reasons for the dip in revenue to a failure to come up with additional sources of income, besides no significant increase in suburban fares.
“All our lines are congested. There is no scope for adding services or more commuters. Suburban fares have remained stagnant. Only way is to use available resources optimally and boost revenue,” said a senior WR official.
While WR’s earnings in April-August was better than last year’s, it fell short of target. “In August, we earned Rs 60.66 crore against a target of Rs 68.50 crore. Last year, WR had earned Rs 59.33 crore in the same period,” added the official.