July 2, 2017
Indian Railways is in the process of developing a Southern Freight Corridor, which would be connected to one of three corridors, Railway minister, Suresh Prabhu said today.
The three Dedicated Freight Corridors (DFC) planned by the Railways will provide logistics support for the Make in India campaign and one of the corridors will be connected with the Southern corridor for the benefit smooth movement of freight from Southern State, Prabhu told reporters here.
While works of two of the three corridors will be ready the next three years the Railways is in the process of developing the Southern Corridor, he said.
“The southern States will significantly benefit from the DFC as it will be connected to Southern part of the country,” he said.
Stating that freight corridors will completely criss-cross the country boosting freight movement Prabhu said “we will have to develop a huge backbone of infrastructure for the logistics, if Make in India has to succeed.”
He said that 10 products were the mainstay of Railway’s income and two-third of the revenue came from the freight.
However the income from freight was on a decline in the last couple of years, despite increase in tonnage, and in order to augment revenue, freight rates will be reduced soon, Prabhu said.
When asked about plans to help farmers in distress, like free transporting of their produce or issuing free passes, Prabhu said that the railway has operated additional freight train to lift onions from Maharashtra to help the farmers.
The transportation of the produce was the biggest problem being faced by the farmers, Railway will extend any support needed for them and asked Container Corporation of India to look into the issue.
Stating that the farmers, who are in difficulty, are of the top priority of the Government, Prabhu said that if required necessary cold chains and storage facilities can be extended to them.
To another question on GST, he said it is good for economy.