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Indian Railways to set up business developments units to boost revenue

Kolkata: Indian Railways has decided to set up business development units (BDU) at zonal and division level for increasing revenue and maintaining proper freight service.

The decision comes after Indian Railways freight earnings declined as the Coronavirus-led lockdown brought the economy to a standstill.

The Railway ministry data pointed out that earnings from the movement of goods declined 38 per cent in April and May to Rs 13,436 crore.

According to sources, the Railway Board has asked all general managers to work towards doubling the freight volume being carried by goods trains by 2024.

The general managers would set up a multi-disciplinary BDU comprising officers from different departments (Operations, Commercial, Finance and Mechanical) of Senior Administrative Grade (SAG) level to be coordinated by Chief Freight Traffic Manager (CFTM).

This apart, BDU comprising Junior Administrative Grade (JAG) level officers at the divisional level would set up and be coordinated by Senior Divisional Operation Managers (DOM).

These groups will have frequent interaction with trade and industry to scout for and attract traffic.

"During the first quarter of the current financial year (April-June of 2020-21), South Eastern Railway (SER) has loaded 31.34 million tonnes of freight. Earnings from freight loading during the above period have been Rs. 2474.87 crores," said an official of SER.

The freight trains are carrying foodgrains, fertilizer, coal and mineral, onion, salt, iron and steel, POL, container, clinker, cement, ballast, ash, sand, stone, maize to cater to the demand of consumables and other inputs.

"Eastern Railway has run a total of 290 freight trains on July 11," said an official.

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