PM rules out privatisation of the railways

Varanasi: On a visit to his Lok Sabha constituency on “Good Governance day”, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday ruled out privatisation of the railways but asked people not to be wary of foreign and private capital being utilised for improving infrastructure of the national transporter.

“There is a misunderstanding that the railways is being privatised. However, I want to make it clear that we are not privatising the railways. We cannot go in this direction. You don’t have to worry. It is neither our wish nor thinking,” he said, asking the unions not to pay heed to “rumours” in this regard.

Sharing his vision of linking the national transporter with his ‘Make in India’ campaign, the Prime Minister made it clear that he planned to utilise the enormous capital available with business establishments within the country as well as abroad for improving the infrastructure.

Modi recalled his childhood days when he had sold tea near a railway station, saying, “I have an association with the railways that is older than what most of the railway employees can claim to have.”

The Prime Minister also made a strong pitch for producing good teachers in large numbers as he launched a mission in the name of BHU founder and Bharat Ratna awardee Madan Mohan Malaviya for teachers’ training.

He said that the whole world is looking at India with great expectations “but we are not ready”.

He advocated introduction of a five-year training course after schooling for those aspiring to pursue a career in teaching and said an environment needs to be created for producing teachers who are rooted in the country’s culture and tradition and can be exported in lakhs as there is a large demand globally.

The Prime Minister began his visit by paying floral tributes at a statue of Malviya at BHU. He, thereafter, visited Assi Ghat and expressed satisfaction over the cleanliness drive which he had launched by wielding a spade there last month.

He also wielded the broom in Vishwanath lane, a narrow street near the Assi Ghat, to encourage extending the cleanliness drive further in the ancient temple town.