Indian Railways Latest News Today: Putting an end to the earlier speculations and media reports surrounding  Indian Railways amidst the ongoing disinvestment drive, Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw on Thursday said that the iconic national transporter will not be privatised. He further added that such move would not happen in the future also.Also Read - RRB NTPC Results Row: Railway Minister Assures To Address Grievances After Protesting Students Set Train on Fire In Bihar

Speaking at the News18 India Chaupal event, the Railways Minister Vaishnaw said the Centre is not making any such plan for Railways as it is a huge and very complex system. However, he added that for him, the direct feedback from passengers and tea stall vendors was valuable and appreciated. Also Read - RRB NTPC Results Row: Aspirants Found Involved In Vandalism During Protest Will Be Barred From Recruitment, Warns Railways

Prior to Vaishnaw, his predecessor Piyush Goyal too had clarified earlier that the carrier would never go into private hands. “I assure you that the Railways is India’s property and it will be never privatised. It is a property of every Indian and will remain so,” he had said. He, however, had mentioned that private investment should be encouraged for more efficient functioning of Indian Railways. Also Read - Indian Railways Cancels 478 Trains Passing Through Delhi, UP And Bihar | Full List

Earlier, Vaishnaw had too cleared air on the matter and in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha, he had said that to bridge the gap in capital funding, Public-Private Partnership mode is envisaged to facilitate faster development of network, manufacturing of rolling stocks and delivery of passenger and freight services.

He had also stated that railway infrastructure would need an investment of Rs 50 lakh crore between 2018 and 2030. In Rajya Sabha, he had also added that there was a proposal to use PPP mode for inducting modern rakes to run passenger trains on select routes with an objective to provide improved service delivery to passengers.

It must be noted that the Railway Ministry had last year invited Request For Qualifications (RFQ) for the participation of the private sector for the operation of passenger trains over 109 OD pairs of Indian Railways routes.

In this regard, the Railway Ministry had informed that the 109 OD pairs have been formed into 12 clusters across the network of Indian Railways.

Notably, the Indian Railways plays a pivotal role in running the fourth largest rail network in the world—across 64,000 route km, ferrying nearly 23 million passengers per day in over 13,000 passenger trains daily.