The Right Track
India is fast becoming an economic giant in Asia and has a global presence. However; the railway system of India tells a different story. The country’s growing population demands from the government to modernize its transport system since a majority of the population still prefers to commute through railway. With a rise in train accidents, the government must take necessary steps in revamping railway crossings as per international standards. Nearly 15,000 deaths occur each year because of unmanned railway crossings and safety systems which require maintenance or are outdated. Moreover, the country, which needs fuel for industrial growth, is wasting it on fuel-inefficient locomotives that the government should replace at the earliest.
It is true that public-private-partnerships can bring modernization in the railway infrastructure. However; hesitation on part of the private sector to make any decision or discuss investment projects signifies the miserable state of the railway sector. The Indian government’s decision to seek assistance from China gives a glimmer of hope. China was facing similar problems in its railway industry and it dissolved the Ministry of Railways as the first step towards resolving the crisis and transferred all operations to the China Railway Corporation. India should learn from China’s efforts in the railway sector as a case study and must implement similar practices to save its railway sector before it’s too late.
Vinod Rakesh Bangalore, India