The year-long farmers' protest against the three farm laws across the country incurred enormous losses for the Indian Railways and the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI).
Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw had revealed the information in response to a query in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday, December 1. The minister said the train movements were obstructed in 15 and 18 zones of the Indian Railways.
The protestors stopped more than 1,000 trains passing to various zones, which resulted in a loss of over ₹264.63 crore up to October, The New Indian Express reported.
Northern Railways With Max Losses
The maximum losses were incurred from five divisions of Northern Railways to the tune of ₹22.58 crore from Punjab, Harayana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Chandigarh, Uttar Pradesh, and Delhi.
Eastern Railway suffered losses of ₹3.34 crore, while the South Eastern zone had ₹2.61 crore in the loss.
Losses Sustained By NHAI
In a query to NHAI, Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari informed that the agency suffered a revenue loss of ₹2,731.32 crore in Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan due to the protests.
Since October 2020, the toll collection has been severely affected. Reportedly, more than 60 toll plazas went in the loss. Primarily they were non-operation in Punjab, and later in parts of Haryana and Rajasthan, with losses to the tune of ₹ 1,269.42 crore, ₹ 1,319.6, and ₹ 142.3 crore, respectively.
"Further, NHAI invited bids for 14 non-operational fee plazas in the Rajasthan based on assurance from local administration, and two plazas were awarded on 03.09.2021 and 07.09.2021," Gadkari had said.
Once the protests are called off, the agency will implement an exigency plan. The regional offices have been directed to mobilise the concerned workers instantly and operationalise the fee plazas, the minister added.