Earlier apprehensions have been strengthened in the wake of Mallikarjuna Kharge assuming office as the new Railway Minister. Sources from Railway Board said that Railway Minister Mr.Mallikarjun Kharge is likely to process the case file pertaining for creation of a new Railway Division at Mangalore under the South Western Railway zonal jurisdiction further and he is in discussions with various authorities and civic bodies.
In such a case, the already truncated Palakkad Railway division to face bleak prospects with the bid to form another division at Mangalore. Earlier more than half of the Palakkad division was taken to form the Salem division when Pattali Makkal Katchi leader Mr.R.Velu was the Minister of State for Railways. Though a railway coach factory was announced for Palakkad in lieu of the bifurcation of the division, it is yet to begin. The Mangalore Railway Development Committee has already appealed for a new railway division headquartered there to ensure the development of coastal Karnataka. The delegation had met Kharge at his residence in New Delhi in the presence of Union Minister for Surface transport Oscar Fernandes. The delegation, according to newspaper reports, was led by committee convener P V Mohan and Mangalore North MLA Praveen Bangara.
“The move should be resisted at all costs. The creation of the Mangalore division will sound the death knell for the Palakkad division since the freight revenues were mainly obtained from the Mangalore port. The Malabar region will be affected badly as the allotment of funds will be channeled to the new division“, said the general convener of the Malabar Rail Users’ Association C E Chakunny.
M B Rajesh MP said that he would raise the issue in parliament.