New Delhi: Piyush Goyal, Minister of Railways & Coal, inaugurated Smart Railway Conclave organised by FICCI, in New Delhi. In his opening remarks, he reiterated Government’s commitment to ensure a smart Railway and a smart nation so that every citizen of India gets a better future. He also emphasised on smart planning, smart project implementation being put into effect holistically in Railways.
Speaking on the occasion, Piyush Goyal said, “India has undoubtedly the unique opportunity to leapfrog. But before that, some basic elements will have to be sorted out, and that’s what this Government has focused on over the last four years. Over 64 years of Independence till 2014, the infrastructure in Railways growing by merely about 12%. Due to parcelling out small amounts of money over different projects, cost kept escalating. We still have some projects which were started in the Emergency. There was a total investment in Railways from 2009-14 of ₹ 2.3 lakh crore. The Government has ramped it up to ₹ 5.3 Lakh crores. But it’s not about ramping up, but about how you invest that money. Under the leadership of Prime Minster Narendra Modi, I have the courage of conviction to say that we are influencing the future in a positive, progressive and smart direction. We’ll have to start thinking, planning, and working smartly. I think that’s the change that you would have seen the last 4 years. As they say “Everyone has a sense that right now is one of those moments that we are influencing the future”. With the debate on the bullet train, I believe that it’s our duty to engage with most modern technology and bring it to India and let the people of India enjoy the benefits of the best in class”.
Talking about several initiatives undertaken to transform Railways as a smart transporter, Piyush Goyal said that while deliberating on possibilities and solutions, it is important to keep the practicality in mind.