Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar termed the Railway Budget “disappointing,” and alleged that it neglected backward States including his. .
“The pattern of bad budgets, which began with UPA-I, still continues. On the one hand, the government declares a surplus and, on the other, ignores a backward State such like Bihar.”
Mr. Kumar said Bihar did not get any allocation for completing old projects such as the Digha-Sonepur and Munger bridges. Moreover, “Bihar didn’t get any new trains, despite having the largest number of travellers in the country.”
As for the proposal of public-private partnership, Mr. Kumar said the Centre shifted the burden of funding to the States. “If the PPP is the Centre’s proposal, they should provide the necessary funding. Why have the Sates been burdened with it? The announcement of new projects has been done without providing funds required to complete them.”
The claims of the government refraining from increasing passenger fares were hollow, as the tatkal and cancellation services became dearer, Mr. Kumar said.
Lok Jan Shakti Party leader Ram Vilas Paswan, while welcoming the restraint in hiking fares, also accused the Centre of “neglecting” Bihar, and said the Railways’ finances were cause for concern.