Indian Railways
Porters transport goods on a hand-pulled trolley to load onto a train at a railway station in Kolkata July 8, 2014. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government disappointed markets with its first major economic policy statement on Tuesday, promising to seek foreign and private funding for the railways but giving no details of how it would lure investors. India's state-owned railways are the fourth-largest in the world. They have suffered from years of low investment and populist policies that have kept fares low.Reuters

Minister of State for Railways Manoj Sinha said, on Saturday, that there was no proposal at present to hike rail fares.

At a function arranged to flag off the tri-weekly Lucknow-Kathgodam Express, Sinha spoke to the media on the sidelines, insisting that it was not right to discuss the rail budget in advance.

He further said that the rail budget would be discussed in the Parliament and it would be wrong to discuss it in advance.

"There is no proposal as of now to hike rail fares" Sinha said.

When quizzed about Lucknow benefitting from the rail budget, the Minister - elected from Ghazipur in Uttar Pradesh - just said: "Lucknow will have a lot," leaving it open-ended.

Recently, Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu said that the reduction in passenger fares were unlikely, even in the face of reduction in diesel prices, as the Railways recovers only half of the passenger cost it incurs.

He noted that the government is already subsidising rail fares. Modernisation of the railway service to match commuter expectations and for expansion of the network is hampered by a huge demand-supply gap and limited financial resources. "The point is how to raise resources," said the Railway Minister, DNA reports.