Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Indian Railway Budget, Balance Sheet of the World’s Largest Democracy’s Railway System

The Railway Budget of India can be referred to as the Annual Financial Statement of the Indian Railways. The Railway Budget is presented in the Indian Parliament by India’s Union Minister for Railways, every year usually two days before the General Budget in February. The First Railway Budget of Independent India was presented by Mr. John Mathai in November of 1947.

In the year 1924, India’s Railway Budget was separated from the General Budget [Please see 2nd Paragraph of this blog article:]. The people of India have been taking interest in the Railway Budget since after Independence as it brings along information about the Changes in Train Fares, be it Passenger or Freight Rail Services. It also gives information about the various Railway Projects from the past and also about their future plans. The projects can be Track Doubling, Track Gauge Conversion, Track Electrification or introduction of new routes.

The Railway Budget of India also acts as a Balance Sheet which describes the Annual Earnings and Expenditures made by the Indian Railways. It also announces the list of various trains which will be introduced, the extension of existing trains and increase in some train’s frequencies. The Rajdhani Express, Shatabdi Express and Duronto Express are examples of some Superfast Train Services which have been announced and then introduced during various Indian Railway Budgets over the years. The Kolkata-Amritsar Superfast Express which runs between Kolkata Chitpur Terminal (KOAA) and Amritsar (ASR) is one train as an exception which was converted from a Duronto Train to a Normal Superfast Train just before its inauguration.

           Thus, it can be concluded that the Railway Budget of India is a hefty but important aspect for the smooth functioning of the Indian Railways. Ultimately, it’s the Ministry of Railways which frames the Indian Rail Budget in consultation with the Railway Board of India.

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Bank Fixed Deposits, a very safe option for Financial Investment

A Bank Fixed Deposit also known as an FD is a facility provided by banks in Asian Nations like India to its account holders. An FD provides a higher interest rate as compared to a normal Savings Account to bank account holders, until a fixed date of maturity. A separate account’s creation in a bank only depends upon the particular bank’s rules and policies for availing the Fixed Deposit Scheme. Banking is a system of money saving and transactions which was believed to be started by the Egyptians. This system brought along with it modern tools of handling money like Fixed Deposits or Recurring Deposits in terms of schemes and cheques or drafts in terms of cash alternatives.
          There are various advantages which a Bank Fixed Deposit provides to its bank account holders. Some banks can provide loan to FD Holders against their Fixed Deposit Certificates at interest rates which are competent. A Fixed Deposit Investment in India is usually considered safer than a Post Office Account Money Deposit as it’s covered under the Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Scheme of India. An FD Scheme is also said to provide benefits in taxes like Income Tax.
          There are some disadvantages of a Bank Fixed Deposit for its investors also. FDs don’t always guarantee good interest rates as banks may provide lesser interest rates if a nation’s economic conditions are unsteady. Investors can’t withdraw money from a Fixed Deposit before maturity which makes an FD’s nature a bit rigid as compared to a more flexible Recurring Deposit.
          Thus, it can be concluded that a Bank Fixed Deposit is till today considered as one of the safest options for investing money, especially in Developing Economies like India. Ultimately, it’s an option which people can safely go for rather than the more risky financial system of Stock Equities consisting of Shares and Mutual Funds.