The Indian Railways—one of the largest developed networks in the world—are the major catalyst to infuse socio-economic growth in the economy. The premier transport and logistics organisation of the country has the largest rail network in Asia and is the world's second largest under single management.
Foreign direct investment (FDI) inflow into railways related components has been US$ 122.10 million from April 2000 to January 2011, according to according to the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP).
The total approximate earnings of Indian Railways on originating basis during April 1, 2010 –February 28, 2011 were US$ 18.68 billion compared to US$ 17.26 billion during the same period last financial year, registering an increase of 8.24 per cent.
The total goods earnings have gone up from US$ 11.64 billion during April 1, 2009 –February 28, 2010 to US$ 12.48 billion during April 1, 2010 –February 28, 2011, showing an increase of 7.20 per cent.
The total passenger revenue earnings during the first eleven months of the financial year 2010-11 were US$ 5.22 billion compared to US$ 4.74 billion during the same period last fiscal, registering an increase of 0.15 per cent.
The revenue earnings from other coaching amounted to US$ 508.4 million during April 2010- February 2011 compared to US$ 461.22 million during the same period last financial year, showing an increase of 10.23 per cent.
The total approximate number of passengers booked during April 2010-February 2011 was 7206.30 million compared to 6777.13 million during the same period last financial year, showing an increase of 6.33 per cent.
Indian Railways have carried 832.75 million tonnes (MT) of revenue earning freight traffic during April 2010-February 2011. The freight carried shows an increase of 29.25 MT over the freight traffic of 803.50 MT actually carried during the corresponding period last year, registering an increase of 3.64 per cent.
During the month of February 2011, the revenue earning freight traffic carried by Indian Railways was 76.80 MT. There is an increase of 4.26 MT over the actual freight traffic of 72.54 MT carried by the Indian Railways during the same period last year, showing an increase of 5.87 per cent.
The Union Railway Budget for 2011-12, presented by Ms Mamata Banerjee, the Railway Minister, on February 25, 2011, highlighted the following: