GUWAHATI, July 11 - Even as the Maligaon-headquartered Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) registered a healthy growth in its passenger earnings during 2015-16, a dismal performance in the goods segment brought down the zone�s annual overall total earnings by a substantial margin during the last fiscal.
In the April 2015-March 2016 period, NF Railway�s total approximate gross earnings on originating basis stood at Rs 3,363.69 crore compared to Rs 3,699.50 crore in 2014-15, registering a big fall of 9.08 per cent.
This happened even as the total passenger earnings went up by 6.60 per cent to Rs 1,514.05 crore in that fiscal as compared to Rs 1,420.26 crore in 2014-15.�
The fall in overall earnings can be accounted to the big slump in revenue from goods traffic. As per data, goods earnings of the NF Railway fell by as much as 19.36 per cent to Rs 1,168.90 crore in 2015-16 as against Rs 1,449.52 crore in the previous financial year.
Earnings from other coachings grew over 39 per cent year-on-year in 2015-16 to Rs 216.89 crore compared to Rs 155.83 crore in the previous year.
However, sundry earnings registered a huge slump of 31.17 per cent and fell to Rs 463.85 crore in the last year as against Rs 673.89 crore in 2014-15.
The total approximate number of passengers booked during 2015-16 fiscal went up by 4.40 per cent on an annual basis to 94.95 million from 90.95 million in the April 2014-March 2015 period.
�The low growth in total earnings can be attributed to fall in goods carriage, which has happened because of reduction in the coal trade following court rulings. Coal from this region is of low quality and lots of restrictions have been put up with regard to its usage, thereby reducing the trade in the commodity,� said an expert.
He added that double-tracking of the railway line in Assam and the other states of the North East can help in increasing goods earnings by giving a boost to trade on other commodities, including farm products within the region.
�In addition, there is also scope for generating more revenue from passenger traffic by giving a fillip to the local and suburban services,� the expert added.
Meanwhile, the total approximate gross earnings of the Indian Railways, on originating basis registered, went up by over 4.6 per cent to Rs 1,64,896 crore in 2015-16 compared to the previous fiscal.