Railways on Tuesday withdrew the 4% exemption on fertiliser and foodgrain and effected a hike of 10-15% in few other commodities.
Commodities like sugar and few petroleum products freight rates were last increased in 2010, to meet the increasing fuel cost and wages.
While, foodgrains and fertilisers were exempted from increase by the national transporter last year, the exemption has been withdrawn as part of rationalization.
However, according to the Railways the increase will have no impact on common man as the most of the burden will be shared by government agencies such as FCI which are primary customers of the national transporter.
Moreover, freight rates of iron ore have been reduced by 16%. The new rate is reduced by Rs 475 per tone and is now fixed at Rs 2,425 rupees per tonne. Increase in new rates will be applicable from March 5, according to a railway notification.
Railways saw a slip in iron ore loading in the current fiscal as there were issues in Odisha and Karnataka on illegal mining.