NEW DELHI: The National Council of Applied Economic Research will soon bring out a report on employment generation potential in Indian Railways in the backdrop of the huge investments that are planned, said the Union Minister for Railways, Suresh Prabhu.
Delivering the 33rd Nani A Palkhivala Memorial Lecture on the topic ‘Putting India on the Fast Track’, here on Saturday, he said every rupee invested in the railways offers six times more in spinoff benefit.
Citing the massive efforts by the Ministry to strengthen railway infrastructure, he said this was an instance of the government driving economic development by creating an environment for business and entrepreneurship.
Prabhu pointed out that Palkhivala, an eminent jurist and authority on Constitution and taxation laws, was always for individual rights and believed that State should act as a facilitator.
Proposals for the creation of a dedicated freight corridor that will speed up movement of material and free up space for passengers, high speed trains linking major cities, modernising rolling stock and enhancing efficiency are all aimed at creating an enabling environment for business.
Recalling from his personal experience while heading the power sector, he said the power sector had grown only after power reforms and drawing private sector players to invest.
“But that does not mean privatise everything,” he cautioned. There should be a balance with the State focussing on governance, ease of doing business, large infrastructure projects, safety and security and regulation. In the last few decades the government has “ignored core functions and abdicated its responsibility”. That is now being corrected, he said.
Earlier in February, 2016, NCAER conducted a Research Study for Indian Railways, “Factors Impacting Railway Freight Traffic in India” and the document was published in the presence of Railway Minister.