New Delhi: India Inc hailed the Railway Bugdet 2007-08 as promising and said measures, especially those on containers and freight services, will not only help the industry but benefit the general public as well.
The Confederation of Indian Industry welcomed the freight rate cuts on petrol, diesel and iron ore, saying it would have an overall positive impact on the economy.
“The freight impact on the industry is in the right direction and general approach of the budget was to improve efficiency and higher output,” Chairman of CII Railways Equipment Division J P Choudhary said.
“The decision for increased investments on container traffic by running more trains is a welcome step. It will bring down the cost to end users and, in the long run, help to improve railway services,” Gateway Distriparks (Rail Freight) CEO Sachin Bhanushali said.
Texmaco President Ramesh Maheshwari said: “It is truly exciting. Year after year Lalu Prasad is becoming a turnaround expert and the figures he has given are mind-boggling.”
Assocham also welcomed the Railway Budget for successfully linking the old economy with the new and taking full advantage of modern technology.
“Besides, facilities provided to the economically weaker sections, traders, physically challenged and senior citizens and others are welcome,” Assocham Secretary General D S Rawat said.
Low-cost airlines, while welcoming the announcements made by Lalu Prasad, said that the fare cuts would not have much impact on the cost of air travel.
“The numbers are huge but it would not impact low cost air travel. We will not revise our fares as most of our fares are below first and second class AC fares,” Air Deccan Chairman and Managing Director G R Gopinath said.
Kingfisher Airlines Director A K Ravi Nedungadi also said the fare cut by Railways would not have any negative impact on the airline industry.
“The minister is doing the right thing. However, we do not see any negative impact. The fare cut will certainly be helpful in increasing traffic in shorter travel but for longer distance people will not change from airline to Railways,” Nedungadi added.