Khanapur (KNP): Minister of railways Mallikarjun Kharge commissioned a 37.2-km-long new railway line between Humnabad and Khanapur at a function held at Humnabad railway station on Sunday.
He also flagged off an inaugural DEMU passenger special train from Humnabad to Bidar to mark the commissioning of the new railway line.
Speaking on the occasion, the minister said that keeping in view the potential for growth of traffic and in response to the requirements of the people of north Karnataka, the railways had been expanding its network and services in the area.
The Khanapur-Humnabad is a part of the Bidar-Gulbarga new rail line project. Diesel-electric multiple units between Bidar and Humnabad would be of great use to the people of the region.
Will Build Pit Line in Khanapur
A railway pit line will be constructed at Khanapur of Bhalki taluk in Bidar district at a cost of Rs.10 crore and the project will be inaugurated in 15 days, said Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge.
“Due to the lack of a pit line, we could not run the Bidar-Yesvantpur train regularly. The regular service of the train will start by March-April,” he said.
The parliament has approved the proposal to set up a railway administrative office at Gulbarga, he said.
Kharge instructed South Central railway general Manager P K Shrivatsav to complete the remaining line between Humanabad and Gulbarga within two years. He said Rs.200 crore was spent on the 37.20 km new railway line between Khanapur and Humanabad (part of the Bidar-Gulbarga rail line project) and Rs.18 crore for the Bidar-Humanabad DEMU train. Bhalki railway station will be renovated at a cost of Rs.50 lakh, he added.
“The 106.60 kilometre long new railway line between Bidar and Gulbarga was sanctioned at a cost of Rs.369.70 crore. This is a 50:50 cost sharing project between the Ministry of Railways and the government of Karnataka. The total expenditure on the project was Rs.397.61 crore by November 2013.
The revised cost of the project is estimated at around Rs.839.83 crore and has been vetted by the Finance ministry, said Kharge.
Former chief minister and Bidar MP N Dharam Singh, Humanabad MLA Rajshekhar Patil and Bhalki MLA Eshwar Khandre also spoke.
MLC Basavaraj Patil Humanabad, Chincholi MLA Dr Umesh Jadhav, ZP president Santoshamma Pundalikappa Koudyal, South Central Railway General Manager Shrivatsav and other officials were present.