Between 2003 and 2007, Modi, as Gujarat CM, took about 100 chartered flights worth Rs 16 crore. But Congress leaders have not been transparent about their use of charters either.
Arun Kumar Das
The ambitious programme was launched in 2015 by the then railways minister Suresh Prabhu with a finalised PPP model approved by the cabinet after prolonged deliberations with stakeholders.
The Railways is now exploring various ways for General Electric, which was awarded the contract in 2015, to smoothly exit the Rs 2,000-crore project.
Central assistance up to Rs 2.5 lakh per house made by private builders will be provided to buyers, even if the construction is on private land.
The Indian Railways will press close to 4,000 special trains into service for the extra rush during Durga Puja, Deepawali and Chhat festivals.
The big-ticket project is expected to be showcased by the BJP during campaigning for the upcoming Gujarat election and the 2019 Lok Sabha poll.
While an e-procurement process was already in place, ministry officials feel that it hasn’t brought down expenses enough.
The new railways minister has also decided to man all unmanned level crossings within a year.
The train is expected to reduce travel time between Mumbai and Ahmedabad to less than three hours from the current seven hours.
The state-run transporter is struggling with the absence of adequate security systems, deficiencies in track maintenance and a severe lag in adopting new technology.
In a report submitted to the ministry, the World Bank has slammed the manner in which the Commission of Railway Safety probes accidents and has emphasised the need for an independent body to fix responsibility.
Five months after cabinet approval, the department of personnel and training has started paving the way for setting up the Rail Development Authority.