Rail Budget of India was the Annual Financial Statement of the state-owned Indian Railways, which handles rail transport in India. It was presented every year by the Minister of Railways, representing the Ministry of Railways, in the Parliament.

The Railway Budget was presented every year, a few days before the Union budget of India, till 2016. The Government on 21 September 2016 approved merger of the Rail and General budgets from next year, ending a 92-year-old practice of a separate budget for the nation’s largest transporter.[11]

History

Following the recommendation of the Acworth Committee in 1920-21, headed by British railway economist William Acworth[2] The "Acworth Report" led to reorganisation of railways, the railway finances were separated from the general government finances in 1921. After that in 1924 the budget was announced, a practice that continued till 2016.[12][13][5]

The first live telecast took place on 24 March 1994.

Lalu Prasad Yadav, who remained Railways Minister from 2004 to May 2009, presented the railway budget 6 times in a row. In 2009, under his tenure a 108 billion (US$1.7 billion) budget was passed.[6]

In the year 2000, Mamata Banerjee (later Chief Minister of West Bengal) became the first female Railway Minister. In 2002, she became the first female to present the Railway budget and is the only woman to do so for two different governing coalitions (NDA and UPA).

In 2014 budget, Railway Minister D. V. Sadananda Gowda announced the first bullet train and 9 High-Speed Rail routes.[7]

The last Railway Budget [14] was presented on 25 February 2016 by Mr. Suresh Prabhu.

See also