"The Minister has presented a practical and execution-oriented Budget, laying emphasis on implementation of on-going projects and focusing on monitoring them for an early closure", Sumit Mazumder, president designate Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and chairman, CII special task force on Railways told reporters here.

"Setting up of a project management group at the level of Railway Board and a project monitoring and coordination group is a positive step as this would help in reducing delays in project execution", Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) president Sidharth Birla said in a statement.

Notable measures in the budget presented by Railway Minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda in parliament include the proposal of starting bullet trains between Mumbai and Ahmedabad, developing a diamond quadrilateral network of high speed trains connecting major metros and growth centres in the country and a target of nearly 1,000 kms of civil construction contracts towards implementation of dedicated freight corridors in the east and west.

Industry chamber Assocham appreciated the Railway Minister for making a detailed assessment of the financial state of Indian Railways.

"The mounting pressure on the services provided by Indian Railways coupled with deteriorating financial health makes the task of preparing Annual Railway Budget progressively difficult over the years", Assocham said.

"India’s freight network, especially the decision to set up a dedicated freight corridor seems quite significant", said Ratul Puri, chairman, Hindustan Powerprojects.

"With right implementation, the rail budget should improve the railways sector through the thrust on connectivity in three coal evacuation lines, including areas like Jharsuguda in Odisha", he added.

"Railway budget this year is definitely a significant departure from the past in terms of focus on passenger amenities, adoption of technology, capacity building and commercial soundness", said Arvind Mahajan, partner, KPMG India.


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