In the first quarter of the 2019-20 fiscal, the Railways had earned ₹4,345 crore in April, ₹4,463 crore in May and ₹4,589 crore in June.

Perhaps for the first time in its 167-year-long history, the Railways has refunded more than it has earned from ticket bookings, registering a negative passenger segment revenue of ₹1,066 crore in the COVID-19-hit first quarter of 2020-21, an RTI query has found.

The freight earnings, however, during the period managed to hold ground, according to the RTI reply provided by the Railways to Chandra Shekhar Gaur, a Madhya Pradesh-based activist.

Railways eyes 50% increased in freight loading

The first three months of this financial year, when the Railways had to suspend all its regular passenger services due to the coronavirus travel restrictions, the national transporter’s revenue was in the negative – ₹531.12 crore in April, ₹145.24 crore in May and ₹390.6 in June (all in negative), the RTI reply said.

“The minus figures are being shown due to the fact that the value of refunds is more than the value of tickets booked, said Railway spokesperson D.J. Narain.

An official explained that due to the suspension of services, tickets booked for travel in April, May and June were offered refunds, while fewer tickets were booked during these three months due to the restrictions. The Railways has cancelled all regular passenger services indefinitely.

The Hindu Explains | Why has Indian Railways opened doors for private players?

In the first quarter of the 2019-20 fiscal, the Railways had earned ₹4,345 crore in April, ₹4,463 crore in May and ₹4,589 crore in June. The Railways has said that due to the pandemic, it is envisaging a loss of around ₹40,000 crore this financial year.

Passenger revenues of Railways are naturally expected to be low this year due to suspension of most of the services due to COVID-19 pandemic, Mr. Narain said.

However, freight traffic seems to have recovered somewhat since the Railways has been the preferred mode of transportation for ferrying essential during these months.

In April 2020, the freight earning was ₹5,744 crore, in May it was 7,289 crore and in June the number stood at ₹8,706 crore.

In the first quarter of last fiscal year, it earned ₹9,331 crore in April, ₹10,032 crore in May and ₹9,702 crore in June.

Also read | Private trains will benefit travellers: Railways

Mr. Narain said the Railways’ freight operations during the last two weeks are higher than the last year’s corresponding figures for the same period.

This is a very encouraging and positive sign for the things to come, he said.

A concerted effort by railway officials and better management practices will ensure that revenue lost in passenger segment is significantly offset by an outstanding freight performance, Mr. Narain said.

The Railways said that it has also suffered losses to the tune of ₹2,000 crore in the running of the Shramik Special trains which began operations from May 1 to ferry stranded migrant workers home.

You have reached your limit for free articles this month.

To get full access, please subscribe.

Already have an account ? Sign in

Show Less Plan

Subscription Benefits Include

Today’s Paper

Find mobile-friendly version of articles from the day’s newspaper in one easy-to-read list.

Faster pages

Move smoothly between articles as our pages load instantly.

Unlimited Access

Enjoy reading as many articles as you wish without any limitations.


A one-stop-shop for seeing the latest updates, and managing your preferences.

Personalised recommendations

A select list of articles that match your interests and tastes.


We brief you on the latest and most important developments, three times a day.

*Our Digital Subscription plans do not currently include the e-paper ,crossword, iPhone, iPad mobile applications and print. Our plans enhance your reading experience.

Source link


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here