Mangaluru: On the long pending demand for a separate Mangaluru division, he said the issue has been brought to the notice of the railway minister Suresh Babu. Addressing presspersons at the inauguration of escalators at Mangaluru Central railway station on Friday, he said the Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu has been requested to create a separate division for Mangaluru and the efforts are on, he explained.
Railway network in Mangaluru, which has been shared by two divisions and a railway corporation, is in need of a unified division, according to Nalin Kumar Kateel, Member of Parliament from Dakshina Kannada. “There are problems, one is that Mangaluru Central Railway functions under three dvisions – Konkan Railway (KRCL), South Western Railway (SWR) and Southern Railway.
At present, Mangaluru region is served by Southern Railway zone, South Western Railway zone and Konkan Railway Corporation Ltd (KRCL).
Southern Railway (Palghat) has a railroad length of 13 km in Mangaluru region. Since it is not possible for Railways to bring Mangaluru under KRCL due to technical reasons, the Minister has been requested to create a new division for Mangaluru under South Western Railway zone, he said. There are two options – either creation of a new division under SWR or bringing Mangaluru region under SWR.
Pressure is being put the government and efforts are on,” he explained.
On improving the rail connectivity between Mangaluru and Bengaluru, Kateel said the work on the new Hassan-Bengaluru railway line, via Shravanabelagola, is in full swing. This line is expected to be completed by March. After the commissioning of this line, the travel time and distance between Mangaluru and Bengaluru will be reduced.
At present, the rail link between Mangaluru and Bengaluru is via Mysuru. This increases the journey time between two destinations.
Issues related to the acquisition of land at Solur in Ramanagara district had delayed the completion of the Hassan-Bengaluru railway line project. Stating that the issue has been sorted out now, Kateel said the work is in progress.
To a query on providing free Wi-Fi facility at Mangaluru Central railway station, Naresh Lalwani, Divisional Railway Manager, Palakkad division, said that no timeframe has been set for providing Wi-Fi at Mangaluru Central station.
He said that category ‘A’ railway stations will be provided with free Wi-Fi facility in the first phase. As a result of this, Kozhikode railway station in Palakkad division would get the Wi-Fi facility first.
MP Nalin inaugurates newly set up escalators at Mangalore Central railway station
MP Nalin Kumar Kateel on Friday July 8 inaugurated two electric escalators at Mangaluru Central Railway Station here.
After inaugurating the escalators, Nalin Kumar Kateel speaking to media persons said, “The escalators have been installed at a cost of Rs 2 crore to facilitate passengers to move from the main entrance to platform numbers 2 and 3. Several demands of Phalgat division have been met, especially the Bajal-Padil railway underbridge. Work on Jeppu-Kudpadi underbridge has begun. Railway underpass near Padil is in the completion stage.”
He further explained, “There are also demands for new trains. After the new Hassan-Bengaluru line gets commissioned, Mangaluru-Bengaluru train will pass through Shravanabelagola which will help reduce the distance. As there is demand for more trains in the coastal region, there is a track for more number of trains to operate between Mangaluru-Bengaluru via the Shiradi Ghat stretch between Kukke Subrahmanya road and Sakleshpur.”
Regarding low patronage for Mangaluru-Madgaon Intercity Express to Mumbai he said, “The issue is before the railway ministry. The ministry is thinking of rescheduling or re-routing Kasargod-Byndoor stretch. There is demand to run the service between Kukke Subrahmanya and Byndoor to facilitate pilgrims.”
Regarding electrification of the railway track, divisional railway manager, Palakkad, Naresh Lalwani said, “Inspection has been conducted upto Cheruvathur. From Cheruvathur to Mangaluru, we have set next March as the target. It is a distance of about 80 km.”