Railways set to earn Rs 2000 crore by leasing space to banks for ATMs, advertisers under new policy

Railways set to earn Rs 2000 crore by leasing space to banks for ATMs, advertisers under new policy
Railways will allow banks to install ATMs and allow advertising at unused space in station premises

Railways is set to offer platforms for installing over 2000 ATMs and reach out to prominent advertisers for selling space in trains, level crossing and next to tracks, a move that could potentially help earn around Rs 2,000 crore annually from ‘non-tariff’ sources.

Next week, Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu will launch the non-fare revenue policy, a first in Railways, offering various schemes for revenue-yielding activities including train branding, rail radio schemes and the mega offer of setting up about 2400 ATMs at platforms of major stations across the country.

“Currently Railways earns less than 5 per cent of its total revenue through non-tariff sources. Our aim is to raise it substantially through concrete offers,” a senior Railway Ministry official working on the non fare revenue policy told PTI.

The ATMs will be located at end platforms or prominent spaces in the circulating area of the station and Railways will offer them via a transparent e-auction process for a long-term 10-year contract.

In addition to existing identified sites, Railways will also allow advertising at unused areas like the ones along tracks, road overbridges and level-crossing gates.

The policy will offer out-of-home advertising policy and allow monetisation of railway assets by means of advertising, the official said.

Big LED screens will also come up at station buildings, platforms, foot overbridges for advertising under Rail Display Network as part of the new policy.

Rail Display Network will initially cover 25 stations and later on extended to other major stations.

The policy will offer branding of trains, including internal and external advertisements, and product sampling on trains on a long-term basis to big players.

The official added that advertisement through vinyl wrapping of train exterior (including windows of AC coaches) and inside the coaches shall also be allowed under the scheme.

There will be distribution of sample products free of cost for gauging passenger reaction to the product. However, no sale of products will be allowed in trains, the official added.

The policy will also unveil a new scheme — Content on Demand and Rail Radio Policy, which will allow monetisation of entertainment-based services on trains and stations. These services will be provided through audio video trains and platforms.

The content, in the form of movies, shows, educational programs, will be in both paid and unpaid formats.

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