The Indian Railways has just announced that its prices for transporting bulk commodities will go up by almost nine per cent. So to move goods like coal, steel, and iron ore, for example, it could cost a lot more for industries like iron and steel as well as power companies going forward.
Railways have also done away with the surge pricing policy for premium trains carrying certain types of goods, this means tickets for passengers would be cheaper on certain categories for premium trains, making passenger travel cheaper on them.
The increased freight rate of 8.75 per cent is expected to bring in an additional Rs 3,300 crore at least, in this ongoing financial year. "The additional revenue will further help enhance various aspects of Railways including safety, service, and punctuality," said the Railways.
Some goods do not face this price revision, notes the release; cement, fuel—both diesel and petrol—foodgrains like flours, pulses, fertilisers, salt, and sugar have not been increased.
The ET reports that an unnamed railway official has pointed out that this higher tariff will not have an effect on the price of thermal power production. The country's largest power producer— NTPC —would actually receive transportation of raw materials, in this case, coal, at the old rates earlier rates till the next financial year.
"NTPC had signed a MoU with the railways a couple of weeks ago under which the state-owned power producer would get coal supply at unrevised rates until FY20. NTPC is paying Rs 10,000 crore in advance for the same," said the official.