Continuing with the sustained focus being given on increasing the freight business carried out by the Railways, as per the directions of the Railway Board, Business Development Units (BDUs) are being set up at both Zonal and Divisional levels of SCR. The focus of these units is to double the freight carried by Railways by 2024, with particular focus in strengthening Railway’s share in existing traffic while at the same time strongly foraying into miscellaneous non-bulk goods traffic.
As part of it, General Manager, South Central Railway has approved setting up of a multi-disciplinary Business Development Unit at Zonal Level comprising Senior Administrative Grade Officers from all major relevant fields. Shri. B. Nagya, Chief Freight Transportation Manager (Mob: 9701370901), would be the Convener of the BDU and will have Dr. B.S. Christopher, Chief Commercial Manager (Freight Marketing), Shri. Korram Kishore, FA&CAO/T and Shri. Prasun Chakravarthy, Chief Rolling Stock Engineer (CRSE) as its members.
The Committee will have frequent interactions with the trade and industry to understand the existing pattern of goods transportation and explore the possibility of attracting additional freight traffic to railways. The BDU will also serve as a nodal point for speedy operationalization of any new traffic proposals. Similar Business Development Units are also being formed in all the Six Divisions of SCR (at the Divisional Levels) with Senior Divisional Operating Managers acting as the Coordinators of Divisional BDUs.
In this context, it may be mentioned that the freight traffic in SCR is back on the track of recovery, post the nation-wide lockdown imposed to contain the spread the COVID-19. The freight traffic has been consistently increasing from 4.81 MT in April to 6.71 MT in May 2020 and 6.86 MT in June 2020. Importantly, traffic in several commodities have been increasing and, in some commodities, has even crossed last year level of loading. For example, Cement loading which was only 0.21 MT in April 2020 has risen continually to 2.23 MT in May and to 2.27 MT in June 2020. In fact, the Cement loading in June 2020 is higher than the Cement loading witnessed in June 2019 (i.e., 2.08 MT). Similarly, the Food-grains loading in Apr-June 2020 has increased by more than 174% compared to same period last year (i.e., 2.71 MT this year compared to 0.9 MT last year).
Shri Gajanan Mallya, General Manger, SCR has advised the members of newly formed Business Development Committee to have regular interactions with both the existing and new customers, so that focus is given equally to improve the freight traffic in both the segments. He informed that Railways has been continuously taking several policy initiatives for the benefit of the freight customers and it is important that all these initiatives should reach to the trade and industry, so that additional traffic is attracted towards railways. He suggested the committee members to assist the freight customers to avail the policy / transportation benefits from the Railways in order to capture new traffic.