Friday, February 24, 2006

Indian railways make impressive turnaround

ndtv profit: "On Friday, when Railway Minister Lalu Yadav, the man responsible for the turnaround announces the Rail Budget, he will come up with a staggering Rs 11,500 crore surplus number that puts the Railways right up there with corporate heavy hitters.

The railway surplus is the second highest among Indian corporates, and is way ahead of Reliance Industries after tax profit of Rs 7,500 crore. Only ONGC, with an after-tax profit of Rs 13,000 crore, does better than that.

* Wagon turnaround time is down to 5.6 days from 7.2 in 01-02
* Freight carried was 668 million tonne, up 15 per cent from last year
* Operating ratio up to 84 from 98 in 2001-02
* Loss-making catering and parcel operations to be hived off
* Rs 12,000 crore freight corridor to be announced
* Freight for raw materials and minerals to be rationalised
* One more modern wagon plant

It's been a stunning turnaround for Railways, but most of the credit goes to today's global economic boom, which has driven freight earnings. The railway minister can't afford to relax, and so there are a lot of reforms, including those suggested by a committee headed by Rakesh Mohan."

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