INDORE: The railways has started work on developing Patalpani-Kalakund rail section as a heritage property. Authorities aim to make this rail section open for tourists by the end of this year.
Sources in the railways said that a detailed plan has been prepared for this project. It will include modification of station building, preservation of signalling equipment and development of a waiting lounge.
As per a tentative plan prepared by railway authorities of Ratlam division, a heritage train would run on this 9.5 km rail section between Patalpani and Kalakund. The section has four tunnels and 24 sharp curves.
The train, which will have one loco and two coaches, will run twice a day and cover the distance in four hours on one side.
The section will have stops at major tourist spots, including Patalpani waterfall, Tantya Bhil Mama Mandir, valley view point, check-dams, Choral river view at Kalakund, and Hanuman temple. These stops will have paintings on rocks and trees, platforms, fencing and heritage benches with mini shed.
A trekking spot has also been proposed to be developed on hilltop near Kalakund for nature lovers, and a water tower will also be developed at Patalpani waterfall. Visitors will also have selfie point near valley view points.
The railways has also proposed to preserve an old railway quarter of Kalakund station by upgrading it into a circuit house. Tourists will also have accommodation and IRCTC would operate catering facility in rail coach restaurant and tourist train.
“We have already started working on this project. The whole project will be executed in two phases. Some of the facilities will be developed on the basis of visitors’ response,” said DRM/Ratlam R.N. Sunkar.
Development of station building, stoppages with platforms, fencing, shed and sitting arrangements will be taken up in the first phase, while waiting hall, lounge, circuit house and watch tower will be constructed in the second and final phase of the project, he added.