Bareilly (UP), Feb 19: Ahead of presentation of the Railway Budget in Parliament next week, government today ruled out the possibility of reducing train fares, saying they were "already low".
"It (fare reduction) will not be done. Fares are already low and government is giving subsidy," Minister of State for Railways Manoj Sinha said here.
He was answering questions from reporters last night on the possibility of reduction in train fares in the Railway Budget to be presented in Parliament on February 26. Sinha said the requirement of the ministry was more and resources were limited, therefore rail budget would be balanced and public interest will be kept in mind.
He also said a bill to amend an existing law to empower Railway Protection Force (RPF) to lodge FIR would be introduced in the upcoming session of Parliament beginning Monday. Sinha, who is a member of Lok Sabha from Ghazipur in Uttar Pradesh, said the Railways had its own security wing - RPF - but it did not have the power to lodge FIR in crimes taking place under its jurisdiction.
To another question, he said 100 per cent Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) has been allowed for developing infrastructure and improving safety features in the railways to tide over the severe cash crunch the public sector behemoth was facing.