The new budget, which is scheduled to take place on February 1, or budget 2017 may bring in good news for railways porters or coolies. The Narendra Modi government is planning to bring railway porters under the social security net of Employees Provident Fund (EPFO).
According to Press Trust of India, an additional cess of 10 paise may be levied on each railway ticket in a bid to mobilise about Rs 4.38 crore each year to cover railway porters to come under the EPFO scheme.
"The labour ministry will soon take up the proposal with Indian railways and the finance ministry for levying the cess, will be a negligible amount for passengers, but would help bring these 20,000 workers under the social security net of EPFO," Press Trust of India reported.
As part of the proposal, there are 20,000 railway coolies, who would receive benefits such as provident fund, group insurance and pension. On an average, Indian Railways issues about 10-12 lakh tickets per day. The proposal of including the cess would be applicable per ticket and not per passenger.
According to a report in CNBC-TV 29, Union Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu is seeking budgetary support of Rs 60,000 crore from the Finance Ministry, but is expected to get between Rs 48,000 crore-Rs 50,000 crore.
The upcoming budget would be the first time in 92 years that railway budget would be merged to become a part of the Union Budget and would be presented by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.