BSP, AIADMK, Left want rollback of passenger fare hike

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New Delhi, Mar 21: Members belonging to BSP, AIADMK and Left parties today made a strong demand in the Rajya Sabha that the hike in passenger fares announced in the Rail Budget be withdrawn while the Congress wanted the Railway Ministry to pay more attention to safety.

Participating in resumed debate on the Railway Budget, BSP member S P Singh Beghel said, "Hike in fare is not justified. It should be rolled back."

He suggested the government to adopt new techniques to provide uninterrupted train service in winter besides upgradation of stations in big cities on the lines of Delhi stations.

Demanding roll back of increase in passenger fares, P Rajeeve (CPI-M) also sought withdrawal of fuel adjustment component in passenger fare and setting up Rail Tariff Regulatory Authority for rationalising fare and freight rates.

"These two things are very dangerous. I urge if the TMC stands for its commitment towards aam admi, it should withdraw these proposals," he said.

He also demanded the government to present the status report of last three Budgets. Stating that Indian Railways is standing at crossroads, Motilal Vora (Cong) urged the new railway minister to pay more attention on creating jobs for youth and safety.

Yogendra Trivedi (NCP) said former Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi was "brave" to raise the fare but not tactful.

He could have rolled back fares of sleeper class and stayed on as the Railway Minister. Sayeed Azeez (CPI) also demanded roll back of the fare along with N Balaganga of AIADMK.

Sabir Ali (JD-U) regretted the early exit of Trivedi, wondering as to what was the hurry to remove him just ahead of the discussion on the Rail Budget. Rajniti Prasad (RJD) and A A Jinnah (DMK) also spoke.

PTI 

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