The state BJP hopes the “feel good” factor generated by the Railway Budget would help them assuage the public anger against inflation and help it in the October Assembly polls .
Union Railway Minister Sadanand Gowda set the stage for this when he said: “As I have considered the requests of the suburban passengers for revision in monthly season ticket fares, the revenues foregone on this account would be around Rs 610 crore.”
A delegation of BJP leaders comprising state unit chief Devendra Fadnavis had last week pleaded with the Centre to roll back the hike following a hue and cry over the pre-budget fare hike.
Fadnavis said: “Budget presentation is always a tight rope walk for any government. But if we compare the budgets for the last few years, 2014-15 railway budget stands out as it has adequately given representation to the concerns of Maharashtra. The aspirations of people from every district cannot be fulfilled in one budget when one has to address the entire country. But overall, Maharashtra got a very good deal in this budget.”
Citing examples, he said: “The 864 state-of-the-art coaches would go a long way in addressing the Mumbaikars’ problems. The fare hike rollback is a good step.”
Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Council Vindo Tawde said the pilgrimage tourism initiative would usher in a new chapter between Karnatata and Maharashtra through the Gadag-Pandharpur train.
CM slams Budget
Congress and NCP Tuesday expressed disappointment over the Railway Budget calling it “lacklustre”. CM Prithviraj Chavan said the repeated demand for railway tracks expansion was ignored, adding that while high-speed trains on Nagpur-Bilaspur, Nagpur-Secundarabad and Mumbai-Goa routes were announced, there was no mention of budget allocations for them.