Railway Ministry is embarking upon revenue generation by adopting non-fare measures throughout the country as a part of the policy. Various measures are being undertaken like commercial advertisements in stations, coaches etc. Leasing of Railway land for commercial purposes is one amongst them.
As per the Railway Amendment Act, 2005, Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA) has been empowered by the Government of India to develop Railway land throughout the country for commercial use as may be entrusted for the purpose of generating revenue by adopting various non-tariff measures. RLDA gives land on lease for commercial development as empowered through a fully transparent system including e-tender bidding and publication of open tender notices in newspapers. Based on the highest offer received, the developer is selected.But even after selection of developer for leasing of land, ownership of the land, i.e, title of the plot, continues to be with the Railways.
Proposal for entrustment of selected vacant land is sent by various zones to Railway Board, New Delhi. Railway Board then goes through all pros & cons of the proposal and give permission for commercial development subject to observation of guidelines and rule of the land. By observing these transparent procedures; selected plot/plots are being leased throughout the country for commercial development for a long period.
In line with that policy, the vacant Railway lands at Guwahati were processed for leasing. The total land being leased at Guwahati is 19.44 Bigha only (12.36 Bighas at Pan Bazaar & 7.08 Bighas at Ambari). Moreover, the selected developer will have to construct & maintain 156 units of staff quarters for Railwaymen on one of the plots for a period of 03 years. This will lead to generation of additional revenue to the tune of Rs. 189.65 crs for the Indian Railways.
Moreover, various developmental and commercial activities in the developed land will lead to betterment of the economic condition of local areas. Local entrepreneurs & small businesses will get benefitted economically. Traders, other stakeholders and the society at large will also benefit in various ways.
Leasing of land also helps in removing of illegal encroachments from Railway Land, for which all out efforts are being made time to time with the help of the respective State Govt. authorities.
Indian Railway has & will always be striving hard in the economic & social development of the country.