Railway budget fails to fulfill aspirations of masses:JD(U)

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Patna, Feb 28 (UNI) Janata Dal(United) today charged Railway Minister Lalu Prasad of neglecting the aspirations of the masses and only redressing the grievances of classes.

Addressing a press conference here, party's National General Secretary-cum-Spokesman Shivanand Tiwary said the railway budget 2008-09 has failed to fulfil the aspirations of the poor as nothing substantial was there in the budget for the lower strata of the people.

''Be it reduction in the fare prices of AC or sleeper class tickets on long routes, it is going to help the upper middle class and not the lower middle class,'' he added.

When asked, Mr Tiwary said the announcement of group-D services for potters is an ''illusion'' and not the true side of the story as it is not going to help the porters as per expectations.

He further explained that the porters from general category were eligible for the post of Group-D services only upto the age of 33 years, while the counterparts from OBC and SC/ST categories were eligible upto the age of 36 and 38 respectively.

''As most of them had crossed the age limit, this announcement by the Railway Minister is not worth appreciating,'' he said.

He accused the Railway Minister of sanctioning less amount than approved for the implementation of various railway projects in the state like Digha-Sonepur railway-cum-road bridge, Kosi bridge in Nirmali, development of Kafarpura as a full-fledged railway station to reduce the load at Muzaffarpur junction.

He further alleged that the Railway minister made such attempts deliberately to delay the ongoing developmental works in Bihar.

UNI RH LL RN1957

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