Railways

Rs 36,480 crore to expand rail network in Odisha

BHUBANESWAR: Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu said Rs 36,480 crore is being pumped in to expand the rail network in Odisha to tap the state’s vast tourism potential and abundant mineral and natural resources.

Launching around half-a-dozen projects at a function here, Prabhu said the Centre is focusing on strengthening the railway infrastructure and connectivity in Odisha to enable the state to chug on the path of development, reports The Economic Times.

Noting that the state is endowed with a very long coastline, ports, mines and minerals, exotic tourist spots and pilgrim centres, the railway minister said huge investment is required to improve the rail connectivity substantially.

Therefore, with an emphasis on building a robust railway network in Odisha, the NDA government raised budgetary allocation for the rail sector in the state to Rs 1,465 crore in 2014-15, Rs 3,712 crore in 2015-16 and Rs 4,682 crore in 2016-17, showing substantial hike from Rs 812.5 crore allocated by the previous UPA regime, he said.

The allocation was further raised to Rs 5,102 crore in 2017-18 to put the state on the fast-track of progress, Prabhu said.

Stating that the Rs 3.5 lakh crore investment is proposed by the railways, he said steps have already been taken for implementing a number of projects with an investment of Rs 36,480 crore in Odisha.

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