Railways Misses Freight Loading Target Due To COVID-19


Indian Railways, which was on its way to surpass its freight loading target by February, will end the year 2019-20 with 15.7 million tonnes shortfall than the previous financial year’s 1,212.56 million tonnes, as per the official figures.

As a result of total shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic which has stopped all its operations, earnings from freight loading have also sharply declined in the 2019-2020 fiscal, a loss of Rs 2,129 crore.

In February this year, before the pandemic hit us, Indian Railways had loaded 106.5 million tonnes of goods, around 6 million tonnes more than in February last year. It looked all set to achieve its freight loading target by March this year.

However, in March, the freight loading dipped by almost 3 per cent with the railways carrying around 15.7 million tonnes less goods than the previous year.

As the economic activity across the country came to a standstill there was also shortage of labours for loading and unloading. This is the longest shutdown of operations by the railways since its 54-day strike in 1974.

The railways, however, continues to supply essential commodities even through the nationwide lockdown.