Railway Minister urged to sanction Nilambur-Nanjangud line

Nilambur Road (NIL):  The need to consider favourably a demand to lay a railway line connecting Nanjangud, Sultan Bathery, Ayyankolli, Gudalur Road and Nilambur has been emphasised by A. Raja, The Nilgiris MP and former Union Minister for Communications.

In a representation made in person to Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge in New Delhi on Thursday, Mr. Raja pointed out that it was a long pending demand of the public and the MPs of Wyanad in Kerala, The Nilgiris in Tamil Nadu and Chamraj Nagar in Karnataka.

A survey for the proposed project had been completed, he said and added that the cost for laying the Nanjangud-Sultan Bathery line, which extended over 72 km, worked out to Rs.641 crore and the Sultan Bathery-Ayyankolli-Gudalur Road-Nilambur line extending over 164 km was estimated to cost Rs.3,625 crore.

Pointing that the line would cater to the needs of over two crore people residing in the districts of Wyanad, The Nilgiris, Mysore, Chamraj Nagar, Coorg, Kannur, Kozhikode and Mallapuram, he said that it would also help in the movement of cargo between Bangalore and Kochi.

The proposed line would reduce traffic congestion on the National Highways 212 and 67 and three major State Highways connecting Wyanad and The Nilgiris districts and Mysore and Bangalore.

It would also help protect the forests in the region, the representation said.

Adverting to a suggestion to have a re-look at the survey, Mr. Raja said that if the line was taken through Devala and Glenrock the total distance could be reduced by 82 km and could lead to a saving of Rs.2,000 crore. The line could be made economically viable and socially desirable. He urged the Minister to order a fresh survey on the Nanjangud-Nilambur sector, convene a meeting of representatives of the Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka governments and include the project in the next Railway Budget.

The representation was also signed by Wynaad MP M.I. Shanavas and Chamraj Nagar MP A. Dhruva Narayana.