Varanasi, Oct 24: Blaming political motives for the railways lagging behind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday stressed upon the need for their modernisation and assured his government's commitment in this regard.
During the day, Modi launched several projects in his parliamentary constituency of Varanasi, including a 1,500-km-long gas pipeline, doubling of railway track on the Varanasi-Allahabad route and issuing a postal stamp on Varanasi, among others.
"When the railway budget was announced in Parliament, the MPs did not bother to listen when the Minister announced crores of rupees worth of projects. But as soon as the Minister announced that a certain place would get a train or will get a train stoppage, the MPs would cheer and clap," said Modi.
"The railway budget was confined to which train will stop in which MP's constituency," he said.
"The railway is such a large and important system but its ways are still of the last century," said Modi, stressing on the need to modernise the system, including electrification, gauge conversion and linking remote areas.
"Since independence, the money that has been invested in the railways, in the last two-and-half years, we have we invested more than that. We will continue to modernise it," said Modi adding that doubling of the Varanasi-Allahabad rail track would boost the economy of the region.
"Development of infrastructure changes the whole economy. That is why we just don't announce projects but also ensure that they are implemented in an expedited manner and cost-effective way," added Modi.