A latest CAG report reveals that railways was regularly carrying freight traffic on longer routes and charging by the shorter route, resulting in a revenue loss for the cash-strapped national transporter.

A loss of Rs 422.74 crore was incurred over the period 2010-11 and 2011-12 due to charging by shorter route covering an extra distance of up to 952-km, the report stated.

"This works out to an annual loss of Rs 211.37 crore," it said.

In a number of cases, it was found that zonal railways were compelled to carry freight traffic on the longer route as there are technical constraints such as detention of locomotives, problems of engine reversal on other shorter route.

Despite incurring additional operational costs, CAG noted that no action was taken to rationalize the routes for enabling the zonal railways to charge freight by the actually carried routes.

The CAG has suggested that this problem can be solved by construction of a direct approach line near the station.

Though railways is undertaking electrification of its major trunk routes, this, however, leaves parts of various freight routes as non-electrified sections requiring a change of locomotive.

According to CAG, 38 such shorter routes are non- electrified sections, requiring change from electric to diesel.


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