Stating that Railways should not be blamed for the Amritsar accident, railways minister Piyush Goyal Saturday said it had nearly eliminated unmanned railway crossings.
"In six months, we have eliminated 3,400 of the 3,479 unmanned railway crossings that existed on the Indian railway network," Mr Goyal said, adding the remaining few would be done away with soon.
Mr Goyal was speaking at the annual ET Awards in Maharashtra capital Mumbai.
He said usually the railways used to eliminate up to 1,100 such crossings per year but in order to increase safety and curb accidents, he had instructed staff to do away with the problem in six months in April.
The minister also said the railways should not be blamed for accidents like the one at Amritsar, which left 61 people dead, saying people had come on to the tracks there.
The accident took place on October 19 when a crowd attending a Dussehra function spilled on to the tracks and were mowed down by a train.
Mr Goyal said that capital investments done by the railways have risen 2.5 times in the first four years of the government as compared to the ones under the previous UPA government.
He also acknowledged that the railways was under invested on operations and added that investments are essential for a lot of aspects like safety and to ensure that the network is contemporary.
The minister said a few people will always be opposed to projects like the bullet train and pointed out that some within the Railway Board were opposed to introducing Rajdhani trains when the proposal was mooted in 1969.
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