In its maiden Rail Budget on Tuesday, the NDA government is likely to announce the launch of a new concept for the business traveller — “Office on Wheels”.
According to sources, the Railways Ministry is planning to set up cabins equipped with computers, printers, internet and refreshments in a few coaches of select trains — mainly Shatabdis and some medium-distance AC Express trains — on a pilot basis to provide work-related amenities for corporates on the move.
“This dedicated space would offer business travellers all the facilities they require to perform their official tasks,” said a source. The department is expected to charge a substantial amount, over and above the fare, from those who opt for the “Office on Wheels” facility.
Sources said the Railways has already identified several routes which see a high number of business travellers. “ We feel there will be enough takers for this concept, even if they have to pay extra,” said a Railways official.
Another announcement that Railways Minister D V Sadananda Gowda may make is the setting-up of a suburban railway network in Bangalore. With the passenger fares being increased a few days back, the Rail Budget is expected to present a stable financial position. “The focus will be on mopping up revenues and meeting financial targets,” said a source.
BJP leaders Prabhat Jha, Shahnawaz Hussain and Krishnapal Gujar also addressed a number of rallies.