Suburban Rail dominates rail users’ meet
Bangalore (SBC): To redress the grievances aired by representatives of the public from various districts, the Bangalore Railway Division has decided upon a few new services, the extension of some routes, and a change in time of departure of one train. These decisions were the outcomes of a Railway Users’ Consultative Committee meeting held in the city on Friday between committee members and top officials of all Railway Departments.
The departure timing of the Bangalore-Mysore passenger train from the City station will be delayed by 15 minutes. “It will depart by 7.15 pm instead of 7 pm. An announcement will be made shortly,” Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) Sanjiv Agarwal said.
Suburban rail project issue dominated the meeting of Divisional Railway Users’ Consultative Committee of Bengaluru Division on Friday. The committee members were keen to know the status of the suburban rail project as the Rail India Technical and Economic Services (RITES) submitted a detailed project report on the same to the Railways.
The officials of the South Western Railways told the meeting that they have received the report from the Railway Board only about a fortnight ago and will submit their remarks and comments on the same within a week.
Karanam Ramesh, member of the committee, said, “There are no regular passenger trains towards Arsikere from 7.45 am till 4.30 pm from City Station. The authorities should extend Bengaluru-Tumakuru Passenger to Arsikere.
The SWR officials told the meeting that there is not enough time to extend the train to Arsikere as an additional running time of four hours is required.
Another member Raghothama T R said, “Two to three pair of new trains between Bengaluru city and Tumakuru on the model of suburban train should be provided between 9 am and 5 pm. To this, the officials said that the suggestion will be considered only after completion of final phase of doubling work at Tumakuru Yard.
New DEMU Services
The DRM told that two new special Diesel Electric Multiple Unit (DEMU) services may be introduced between Yeshwantpur and Ramanagaram. The proposal is for one train to leave Yeshwantpur at 3.40 pm and touch Ramanagaram at 5.50 pm with a stoppage at the City railway station enroute. In the other direction, the train will leave Ramanagaram at 6.30 pm and terminate at City at 7.50 pm. The other DEMU service is planned between the City station and Channapatna. The train will leave City at 6.35 pm and reach Channapatna at 8 pm. On return, it will leave Channapatna at 8.30 pm and touch City at 10.10 pm. “A proposal with these two services has been sent to Hubballi for approval,” he added.
Many members had asked for additional trains along the Bengaluru-Mysuru stretch between 4 pm and 7 pm to ease traffic. “The DEMU services will take traffic away from the existing trains,” Agarwal said.
A decision has also been taken to extend the existing route of a train between Yeshwantpur and Devanahalli up to Chikkaballapur and to extend Train No 56525 between City and Chikkaballapur to Kolar.
“These have been decided upon and sent for approval,” he added.
A K Sita Ram, president of Travellers Association (Kolar) asked for the change in timing of the train from Bangalore Cantonment and Bangarpet (Train no 76507) to 1.30 pm in the interest of students, who commute to Bengaluru.
“After completion of classes around 12 noon, they end up waiting till 2.45 pm for the next train to Bangarpet,” he added. They are unable to make it to the station before 12.20 pm when a train departs. He also called for issual of reserved tickets from Bangarpet to Mysuru station.
Senior Divisional Commercial Manager Dr Anup Dayanand Sadhu said that the Railways had informed the state government that suburban rail service for the City was not possible with the existing infrastructure.
“Only after an automatic signalling system is put in place, can line capacity be enhanced and connectivity established between City and Whitefield, Tumakuru, Yelahanka and Ramanagaram.” Additional platforms are vital to run suburban services. There is a plan to shift the pit lines from City station to Binny Mill land and L&T land so that the space can be used for additional platforms, Dr Sadhu said.
Additional coaches and DEMUs and Mainline Electric Multiple Unit (MEMUs) were also required, he added. DRM Sanjiv Agarwal said that RITES had sent across its proposal on rail services. “We are examining feasibility of proposals, particularly the operational part and cost factor. It will take us some time to reach a decision.”