NEW DELHI : Finance Minister Smt Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Union Budget 2024-25 on February 1, 2024 at 11 am in Parliament. The government has announced the implementation of three major economic railway corridor programs aimed at enhancing logistics efficiency and reducing costs. These programs, identified under the PM Gati Shakti Initiative, include energy, mineral, and cement corridors, port connectivity corridors, and high traffic density corridors. By decongesting high-traffic corridors, the operations of passenger trains are expected to improve, leading to increased safety and higher travel speeds for passengers.
FM Sitharaman announced that 40,000 normal rail bogies will be converted to Vande Bharat to enhance the safety, convenience, and comfort of passengers. Key rail infrastructure projects including Metro Rail and Namo Bharat will be expanded to more cities. Also, 3 major railway corridors were also announced – the port connectivity corridor, the energy, mineral, and cement corridor, and the high traffic density corridor.
The resultant decongestion of the high-traffic corridors will also help in improving the operations of passenger trains, resulting in safety and higher travel speed for passengers.
Together with dedicated freight corridors, these three economic corridor programs will accelerate our GDP growth and reduce logistic costs, said Sitharaman.
Additionally, the conversion of forty thousand normal rail bogies to Vande Bharat standards is set to enhance passenger safety, convenience, and comfort. In the Union Budget 2023-24, the ministry had allocated a capital outlay of Rs 2.40 lakh crore for the Indian Railways. This was the highest-ever outlay and was almost nine times the outlay made in the Financial Year 2013-14.