Railway Budget 2013 sets tone for austerity year

Railway budget

The main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) slammed the railway Budget for promising a wheel factory in Rae Bareli, the constituency of Sonia Gandhi, the chief of the ruling Congress party who is seen as the country's most powerful politician.

A report submitted to the government last year estimated that a properly run railway network could add 1.5-2.0 per cent to the country's economic growth and raised concerns about a lack of safety due to chronic under-investment.

In a reminder of the scale of the challenge Bansal faces to improve safety, riots broke out in central India on the same day as the Budget speech after two children were run over by a goods train, local media reported.

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