Has Dinesh Trivedi resigned as Railway Minister?
New Delhi, Mar 15 (ANI): Doubts still exist on whether Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi has resigned, as he told the Bengali news channel Star Ananda that he had a duty to perform, and would resign as soon as the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh or the Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee asked him to.
Trivedi said he still had to answer questions in Parliament.
"I will not leave my duty," he said.
Trivedi's statement came hours after Banerjee had on Wednesday written to Singh to remove him (Trivedi) as Railway Minister and had proposed the name of Mukul Roy as his replacement.
That led to the Congress Core Group meeting at the Prime Minister's 7RCR residence here late at night and weighed its options to deal with Banerjee's demand as a key ally of the UPA coalition.
The demand for the sacking of Trivedi was in response to his decision to hike passenger fares without consulting Banerjee or the TMC leadership. The latter felt that the measure was an anti-poor step.
Trivedi had in his maiden Railway Budget proposed a hike of one paise per km for suburban and ordinary second class travel. He also called for a fare increase for mail express and second class trains at three paisa per km; for sleeper class five paisa per km; for AC chair car, AC 3 tier and First Class by 10 paise per km; AC 2 Tier 15 paise per km; and AC I 30 paise per km.
He said the corresponding rationalization in minimum distance and fare chargeable in various classes has also been proposed.
The proposed revisions will have marginal impact on the fares. The increase in fares for suburban second class passengers traveling 35 km will be Rs.2. For non-suburban second class ordinary passenger traveling a distance of 135 km, increase will be Rs.4 only.
For second class mail or express passenger traveling a distance of 375 km, the addition to the fare will be Rs.12 and that for a 750 km journey by sleeper class on mail/express train will be Rs.40. An AC 3 tier passenger traveling a distance of 530 km will be required to pay an additional Rs.57. The increase for AC 2 tier and AC I passenger traveling over same distance will be Rs.84 and Rs.163 respectively. (ANI)
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