The Minister of State for Railways Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury stated that railway freight tariff will increase from October 1, 2013, due to the hike in fuel cost, however, despite that, passenger fares will remain the same. So far, the minister has not mentioned anything about the percentage of increase in freight tariff, saying that it was a budget proposal to check the fuel adjustment component after six months.
On the sidelines of a conference, Chowdhary said, “Tariff has already been increased. As per the proposal of the budget, it will be hiked again in October”. Earlier, railways had increased the fare by 5.7 percent in April 2013 and then linked the fuel adjustment component (FAC) with goods tariff.
At the conference, the minister was also asked if passenger fares will be increased, to which he responded negatively and stated that it will be just freight tariff for now. Chowdhary went on to say that if the global oil price decreases, then even freight tariff will decrease. The minster also informed the press that the Indian rupee value in the current scenario is volatile and is a cause of concern for everyone.
For the time being, railways is in the process of setting up Rail Tariff Authority for which it got an approval from the cabinet in August 2013.
Photo Credits: The Hindu