Centre, State to Spend 50-50 for Rail Projects in Jharkhand

Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren has approved the report of the committee constituted under the chairmanship of the Development Commissioner to give suggestions on the construction and expenditure on railway projects in future in the State. This will improve rail connectivity in the state. In the report presented by the committee, the most important railway projects will be taken up for construction on the basis of 50-50 percent expenses sharing by the Centre and State government.

The committee has given detailed suggestions with reference to the role of anchor Jharkhand Rail Infrastructure Development Corporation (JRIDCL). It states, “to connect the district headquarters of the State, where there is no railway connectivity yet, to start important railway projects as joint ventures and to identify, plan and develop rail projects within the state.”

The report by the committee said that the Centre and State government will have a 50-50 percent share in the expenditure on the construction of railway projects that can play an important role in the socio-economic development of the State. It further elaborates that if the state government’s share in the expenses incurred in the construction of such railway projects increases, it will be made through railways or joint ventures.

Suggestions have also been made on connecting the district headquarters including Simdega, Chatra and Khunti, which are not connected with railways. With this, the State government will have less stake in the schemes for rail connectivity in remote areas of the state, but JRIDCL will play a role in identifying such remote areas.

Rail projects that are not financially profitable but are important in terms of critical connectivity, capacity enhancement and socio-economic development in the State, will be taken on the joint venture’s debt-equity concept. The funds for the expenditure of such railway projects will be raised through external sources such as private/government stakeholders and loans.

Role of JRIDCL

The joint venture of the State-JRIDCL (State Government and Ministry of Railways) will play the anchor role in the identification, planning and development of railway projects. The share of the State government and the Ministry of Railways in the joint venture to be built for such railway projects will be in the ratio of 51:49. The finance of these railway projects will be on a debt-equity basis.

Who are the Members?

The committee has the members of the Planning and Finance Department, Revenue, Registration and Land Reforms Department, the Secretary of the Road Construction Department and the Secretary of the Transport Department. This committee has submitted its suggestions to the state government in the form of a report on important railway projects for Jharkhand, increasing rail connectivity in the State and the expenditure on it.

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