Government grants big concessions to corporates wanting to use railway land for cargo terminals and public utilities


Report by Kamgar Ekta Committee (KEC) correspondent


Corporates had not shown much interest in setting up cargo terminals on railway land unless the land leasing policy was revised. The old policy had fixed the land lease rent at 6% of market value and the lease was given only for 5 years.

The government has agreed to their demand and reduced the lease rent to 1.5% of market value, one-fourth of earlier rate. The lease period has been increased by seven times to 35 years, as per the revised policy announced on 7th September 2022.

The government had announced the plans to develop 300 cargo terminals over next five years.

Capitalists had also not shown any interest in the privatisation of Container Corporation of India (CONCOR) unless the lease rent was substantially reduced and lease period increased since most of the CONCOR terminals were located on leased railway land. The privatisation of CONCOR will now be much more attractive for capitalists.

The government has also decided to offer railway land free for setting up public services such as schools and health services under PPP mode. Only a nominal rent of ₹1 per square metre per year will be charged.

Large areas of railway land are available in the heart of hundreds of cities. This land is very scarce and precious in big cities. This land will now be available free for chains of corporate hospitals and schools. Already vastly privatised healthcare and education will now get further privatised using public assets created with public money.



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