Even with the revised fares, the Indian Railways will lose money for each passenger that travels. So far, they have been subsidizing this by hiking freight rates. However, now things have come to such a pass that any freight hikes will make road transport more viable for freight. This is a travesty, since rail transport for bulk goods is much more efficient, eco-friendly and quicker than road transport.
The resultant hullabaloo was a sight to behold. Mamata didi, that venerable and wise lady, threw a tantrum and decided to chuck out the poor fellow who had dared protect the Railways from bankruptcy. She had done her best to run the Railways to the ground when she was the Railways Minister, and felt cheated that her successor was actually trying to improve safety and modernity of the institution.
It makes me think that there is no future for economic growth in India. Everything is viewed from the prism of entitlement. All is well as long as everyone is equally poor and equally deprived. The current government believes in the dictum: Don't teach a hungry man how to fish. Instead, announce a huge free fish distribution program, where the distributor is a crocodile who sells all the fish he cannot eat in the black market and pays for the government's next election campaign. The hungry man buys the stale fish in the black market and votes for the government because he thinks he is relatively better off since everyone is getting stale fish from the black market, since fresh fish is in short supply. The crocodile supports the economies of Switzerland and France by propping up the banking systems / luxury goods industries in those countries.
And so life moves on in this wonderful country.