On January 16, 2021, the Ministry of Railways issued Iron-ore policy 2021 that will govern the allocation of rakes (train) and transportation of iron-ore w.e.f February 10, 2021.
- The aim of the policy is to provide complete logistics support to iron ore customers, thereby helping the iron and steel industry.
- The Centre for Railway Information Systems (CRIS) will update the features of this new policy in the Rake Allotment System module.
Need for New Policy:
The production of steel is critically dependent on transportation of iron and other raw materials. A seamless and simplified process of transportation of iron-ore is a basic need. Therefore, the railway ministry came out with this new policy.
- Notably, Iron-ore and steel accounts for nearly 17% of total 1,210 million tonne freight loading in 2019-20.
- Iron-ore is the second most important stream of traffic of Railways.
Key Highlights of new policy:
–To facilitate ease of doing business, the scrutiny of documentation by Railways has been removed. The scrutiny process was used to be done by Executive Director Rail Movement (EDRM), Kolkata (West Bengal).
- Hereby, EDRM office, Kolkata will have no regulatory role in the new policy.
–There is also a removal of existing categorisation based on customer’s profile into CBT (Central Board of Transportation)/Non CBT customers.
–Higher priority will be given to movement of iron-ore traffic for domestic manufacturing activity.
— Within the domestic movement of iron-ore traffic, priority will be given to steel /Pig Iron/Sponge Iron/pellet/sinter plant, subject to conditions.
–For allotment of rakes (train), old and new plants will be treated as the same.
–The priority of movement of iron ore will be based on the availability of railway infrastructure developed by customers.
About Centre for Railway Information System (CRIS):
Established in 1986 in New Delhi, CRIS is an organization of IT (Information Technology) Professionals and experienced railway personnel under the Ministry of Railways. It designs, develops, implements and maintains the information system of Indian Railways.
- Its major projects are computerization of freight operations, passenger reservation system, NGeT (Next Generation e-ticketing), computerization of Indian Railways Unreserved ticketing system, national train enquiry system, rail budget compilation system, etc.
Additional Info about Iron-Ore:
—Odisha is the largest producer of Iron-Ore in India.
–Tomei, Hematite and magnetite are the key iron ores found in India.
Recent Related News:
i.On October 6, 2020 Piyush Goyal, Union Minister of Commerce and Industry & Railways inaugurated the renaming of 115 year old Naugarh railway station to Siddharthnagar railway station, located at Siddharthnagar district in Uttar Pradesh (UP), through a video link.
ii.The Government of India consented to change the name of Dandupur railway station located between Pratapgarh and Badshahpur on the Varanasi railway section, Uttar Pradesh (UP) as “Maa Barahi Devi Dham”.
About Ministry of Railways:
Union Minister – Piyush Vedprakash Goyal
Headquarters – New Delhi