New Delhi: The record loading of 1010 million tonnes freight and slight improvement of punctuality and safety have been listed as major achievements of the Railway Ministry during the year by the UPA government. Besides ongoing rail expansion, execution of Dedicated Freight Corridor work and introduction of bio-toilets have also found mention in the UPA's Report to the People for the year 2012-13.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh released the UPA report card on the occasion of fourth anniversary of UPA-II in Delhi on Wednesday. With a record loading of about 1010 million tonnes in 2012-13, Railways joined the select billion tonne club joining the US, China and Russia. The report highlighted that as many as 8.5 billion passengers were carried by the national transporter and there has been an improvement of 4 per cent in punctuality and 7.6 per cent in safety. In 2012-13, over 500 km of new lines, doubling of 705 km and gauge conversion of 605 km were added in the railway infrastructure.
While 1317 km rail line was electrified, 678 locomotives, 4023 coaches and 16,894 wagons were added to the pool, coach productions also got a boost with the commissioning of Rae Bareli coach factory. Railways formulated five new models to attract private investment in connectivity to ports, mines and industrial hubs. In order to provide better amenities to passengers 980 stations have been identified to be developed as Adarsh stations out of which 711 have already been completed.
Besides bio-toilets are being introduced in selected trains to improve cleanliness and hygienic condition in trains. Dedicated Freight Corridor, the most ambitious rail project, got a boost as the first major civil contract for track construction for a stretch of 343 km between Khurja and Kanpur on the Eastern Freight Corridor has been awarded.