Railway Budget 2023: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will present the Rail Budget on February 1. In its first term, the Modi government linked the Rail Budget with the General Budget in 2016. According to reports , the Centre will increase the Railway Budget by up to 20% this time. The Railway Board had demanded 25-30% more funds in the allocation of the Finance Ministry. The government may give a fund of about Rs 2 trillion to the Ministry of Railways in the Budget.
This is the last full Budget of the Modi government before the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, and with ten states of the country going to polls this year, including big states like Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Telangana, and Tripura, Meghalaya, Nagaland, and Mizoram in the Northeast. The Central Government may announce many new railway facilities for passengers.
Amid strong railway earnings, calls have risen from various groups to reinstate subsidies, including the one where senior citizens over 60 years of age received up to a 50% discount before the Covid-19 pandemic, which has since been discontinued.
The Indian Railways plans to fully electrify its broad gauge railways by December 2023, a report in news agency IANS said. Additionally, it is working on developing metro rail systems in two Tier-2 cities and outer regions of Tier-1 cities, with the goal of becoming the world's first fully green rail service by the end of this year.
However, the Union Ministry of Railways has achieved Rs 42,370 crore more revenue compared to the previous financial year. The Railway's income has increased by 71%, whereas earlier in 2021, there was a loss of Rs 26,338 crore.