Transform railways with new speed, progress: PM Modi

Taking a dig at past practices, Modi said that earlier rail budgets were all about populist measures aimed at gathering the maximum applause and political agenda.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi | Updated: November 19, 2016 4:29 am
modi-759 Narendra Modi addresses the gathering of Rail Vikas Shivir via videoconferencing from New Delhi on Friday. PTI

Prime Minster Narendra Modi urged the Indian Railways employees to try and transform the organisation with “new speeds, progress and new capacity”.

“This is a technology-driven industry where innovation is essential. So, the Railways has to be about both gati (speed) and pragati (development),” Modi said on Friday while inaugurating the three-day brainstorming session, Rail Vikas Shivir, via videoconferencing. The session was held in Surajkund, Haryana.

Taking a dig at past practices, Modi said that earlier rail budgets were all about populist measures aimed at gathering the maximum applause and political agenda. “I could have also gone for more applause. I have taken the courageous decision of keeping myself free from the love of political gains,” Modi said. The Modi government has decided to merge the rail budget with the General Budget next year.

During his short speech, the PM reminisced about his childhood days of “spending time by railway tracks”. He is said to have spent part of his childhood selling tea at a railway station.

“The century has changed, so the railways should also change. There should be new speed, progress and new capacity,” he said. Modi will visit the event on the concluding day on Sunday.

The PM underlined the need for making the railways financially strong, which he said would bring benefits for the country and particularly for those working for the transporter.

Modi also expressed confidence in the railway workforce but emphasised that they should work together and think about how the railways can be strengthened.