Train fares May to go up after Modi-led Cabinet approves independent RDA

The setting up of Rail Development Authority (RDA) is meant to improve the services offered to passengers, provide comfort to investors and enhance transparency and accountability.

New Delhi: With the Union Cabinet clearing the long-pending proposal to set up a independent Rail Development Authority (RDA), which will determine tariffs ensuring fair play, it has been reported that the railway fares may go up in upcoming months. The setting up of Rail Development Authority (RDA) is meant to improve the services offered to passengers, provide comfort to investors and enhance transparency and accountability.

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According to the cabinet decision, the RDA will be formed through an executive order of the government. The Authority will have a Chairman and 3 members and can engage experts from relevant areas. The Chairman and the members of RDA will have a tenure of five years. An initial corpus of Rs 50 crores will be provided for setting up the organisation.

The RDA will help the government to take appropriate decisions on pricing of services commensurate with costs, suggest measures for enhancement of non-fare revenue, protection of consumer interests, promote competition, encourage market development and create positive environment for investment.

The authority will act within the parameters of the Railway Act, 1989 and its major functions will be tariff determination and recommending principles for classification of commodities, framing principles for social service obligation and guidelines for track access charge. It will also be responsible for setting efficiency and performance standards besides global best practices and benchmarking.

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