Piyush Goyal Ends Silence on Bullet Train, Says '2022 Was Never a Deadline'
Bullet Train and Union Railways Minister Piyush Goyal. (Photo Credit: Getty/PTI)

New Delhi, July 6: A day after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Union Budget 2019 in Parliament, Railways Minister Piyush Goyal claimed that for the completion of bullet train project, 2022 was never a deadline. He stated that the Japanese have promised to complete it by December 2023, however, the Union Ministry mulling if some portion of it can be fast-tracked.

Speaking on the ongoing Bullet Train project, Union Railways Minister Piyush Goyal said, as quoted by Hindustan Times, "2022 was never a deadline; we will try to do a small portion by that time. The deadline as per the Japanese is December 2023. We have requested them if some portion of it can be fast-tracked." Rail Budget 2019: Government Plans to Enhance Metro Rail Coverage by PPP Initiative, Special Purpose Vehicles for Suburban Projects

Among other issues of modernisation of Railways in India, Goyal opined that hike in fuel charge won't have an impact as the PSU is working for 100% electrification. Among other things, he said that remarkable improvements have been in made in the sector of advanced signalling, better passenger amenities and station development.

On being asked about the Union Budget allocation for Railways and if he is happy with it, Goyal said, as quoted by the daily, "We have got exactly what we asked for (Rs Rs 1,60,76 crore). Railway has improved its performance over the years quite significantly and we have been meeting our capital expenditure target to a large extent, particularly last year."

Extending more, he confirmed that though talks on Public-Private Partnership (PPP) for faster growth is being considered,  but 'at the end of the day, Indian Railway remains the government railway'.