Lalu Prasad got math wrong; Mamata Banerjee corrects numbers
New Delhi: Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee took a swipe at her predecessor Lalu Prasad for setting "unrealistically high targets" for revenues in the interim budget and today reduced the projected receipts by Rs 4,800 crore.
"I am presenting the budget estimates for 2009-10 in the backdrop of the shortfall in performance of the Railways in 2008-09. Freight loading fell short of the target of 850 million tonnes by 17 million tonnes. Revenues from commercial utilisation of surplus railway lands also did not materialise.
"This has forced me to review the targets set for 2009-10 in the interim budget. Based on the review, it is very clear that the unrealistically high targets set in the interim budget are not sustainable and warrant a mid course correction," Banerjee said presenting the budget in Lok Sabha.
Net revenue of Indian Railways has been pegged at Rs 8,121.48 crore down from Rs 10,876.48 crore as presented in the interim budget in February this year by Lalu Prasad.
Similarly, the investible surplus available with the Railways has been lowered to Rs 8,631.04 crore for the year 2009-10 compared to Rs 13,532.33 crore projected by the former Railway Minister just over four months ago.
Despite this mid course correction, Banerjee has proposed a higher dividend to the Centre at Rs 5,479.22 crore for the current financial year, up from the interim estimate of Rs 5,304.22 crore.
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