Odisha gets Rs 5,252 crore for railway projects

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Bhubaneswar: The Narendra Nodi government has allocated Rs 5,252 crore in the Union Budget 2018-19 for railway projects in the state as against the state’s demand for Rs 6,500 crore.

It received Rs 150 crore more compared with last year’s Budget, which is the highest ever allocation for Odisha in any Budget pertaining to railways. 

In 2017-18, Odisha had received Rs 5,102 crore for the sector.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had written to Railways Minister Piyush Goyal to demand Rs 6,500 crore for railway infrastructure development.

The Ministry said that 36 projects costing Rs 43,751 crore for 4,750 km tracks are already under execution in Odisha.

East Coast Railway (ECoR) General Manager Umesh Kumar Singh said on Tuesday that ECoR has received Rs 6,563 crore for different projects.

A total of Rs 1,933.60 crore has been allocated for new works for 2018-19. This includes Rs 215 crore for the provision of crossing stations, connectivity from coaching complex to stations, additional loops and extension of loops.

Besides, budgetary allocation for ongoing new line projects has been made. While Rs 200 crore has been allocated for the new Angul-Sukinda Road line, Rs 200 crore have been earmarked for Haridaspur-Paradip line, Rs 625 crore for Khurda Road-Bolangir line and Rs 300 crore for Talcher-Bimalgarh line.

As many as Rs 220 crore have been provided for doubling of the Sambalpur-Talcher tracks, Rs 379 crore for Vizianagaram-Sambalpur third tracks, Rs 220 crore for Budhapank-Salegaon 3rd and 4th tracks and Rs 110 crore for Koraput-Singapore Road line, said Singh.

However, the Odisha government termed the budgetary allocation as “disappointing”.

“We had demanded Rs 6,500 crore for the railway in Odisha, but the Centre allocated Rs 5,252 crore, which is only 2.5 percent increase over last year`s allocation,” said Commerce and Transport Minister Nrusingha Charan Sahu.

He said the Railway is not taking up the ongoing projects seriously, leading to delay in their completion.

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