News # 1
Rediff.com February 26, 2008:
Presenting his fifth Rail Budget in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday, Railways Minister Lalu Prasad said that the Railways had set up new profit records in 2007-08 attaining a profit of Rs 25,000 crore.
Everybody is happy with our performance, said Lalu. He also added that the Railways had done tremendous work in the year 2007-08.
News # 2
Times of India, Jan 25, 2011.
Railway Board chairman Vivek Sahai has directed strict curbs on spending as the railways faces a deficit of at least Rs 2,200 crore.
The board wants to reduce expenditure on replacing worn out assets through the Depreciation Reserve Fund and creating new ones from the Development Fund.
Sources said payments to contractors have been stopped in most zones except the eastern zone, part of which falls in railway minister Mamata Banerjee’s home state of West Bengal. This has resulted in many large projects being stalled in every zone, an official said. The precarious fiscal position has prompted Sahai to control spending as expenses for official tours, overtime and night duty allowances have shot up.
“Now, railway staff have been asked to travel only for essential work. I find that there are huge expenses, and thus, a disturbing trend in the payment of travel, overtime and night-duty allowances,” Sahai said in his letter to the general managers of zonal railways.
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