Rail infra works in northern Karnataka put on fast track

Bangalore:  “With a new Railway Minister from Karnataka, major rail projects pending in the State have been revived,” S K Jain, Member (Engineering), Railway Board, said.  “Rail infrastructure in the State will be taken up expeditiously, thereby the rail network will be developed within a reasonable timeframe, which is expected to help tourist traffic towards Goa,” he added. 

The Railway Board sanctioned the track doubling of Hospet-Hubli-Londa-Tinaighat line at a cost of Rs 2,127 crore in 2010-11, considering potential traffic in the region. Railways has taken up track doubling work on the Hospet-Hubli-Londa-Tinaighat section of Bellary-Hospet-Vasco route (407 km). This route was converted into broad gauge in 1997. Railways expects the track doubling to be completed by December 2015.

“In order to improve connectivity in the region, and to decongest Hospet-Hubli-Londa-Tinaighat section track doubling is planned. When complete, it will increase the number of passenger trains connecting important tourist destinations such as Goa in the west to the world heritage site of Hampi in the east and help in promoting tourism in North Karnataka,” Railways Minister Mallikarjun Kharge recently said in Hubli. 

Kharge said, “Already about Rs 300 crore has been allocated for the phase I of the project to improve connectivity in north Karnataka and Goa this year and for the next year, Rs.300 crore more will be sanctioned.”  Along with tourist connectivity, the Railways is targeting the exports and imports potential of the region. Iron ore is an important export commodity, which is now transported mainly through ports in Goa.

“The work of Hospet-Tinaighat (245 km) is being taken up under Phase-I at a cost of Rs 928.85 crore. The project is funded by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and is being implemented by Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd (RVNL),” said Kharge.