AP State Govt. and Railway Officials say ‘it makes sense to have Zonal Headquarters in Amaravati than Vizag

Andhra Pradesh State Govt has entered into Agreement with Ministry of Railways on the Cost-Sharing for Railway Projects on 50:50 basis.

VIJAYAWADA: Why not Amaravati/Vijayawada for the proposed new zone? This is the question many senior railway officials are wondering even if the demand to have Visakhapatnam HQ has been there for years.

Actual demand has been to move Viskhapatnam out of ECR into SCR, which later on took traction into a movement for separate railway zone following AP bifurcation, aver senior officials. Having new South East Coast Railway (SECoR) in Amaravati/Vijayawada corridor would ensure all top railway officers like GM, principal heads of various departments and others would be at hand for having discussions or undertaking coordinated work with the state government, it is pointed out. “It makes sense to have zonal HQ at Andhra Pradesh State capital because it is centrally located and gone are the days when Railways was doing everything on its own.

These days most new Railway projects are being taken up with the States picking up 50% or two-thirds the cost,” they say. Many officials from the State and the Railways feel it comfortable to have the Zonal Railway HQrs at Vijayawada/Amaravati rather than locating it at Visakhapatnam so that the officials can overcome the administrative and procedural delays, and it is logically convenient for the regular meetings with the concerned departments like Road, Irrigation, Secretariat, Revenue and Transports by Railways.

Moreover, having zonal HQ in Visakhapatnam means top officials being located in the top corner of A.P. having to travel 10-30 hours to reach inspection sites or during emergencies. The government should rather request railways to set up a coach or wagon factory at Visakhapatnam which would generate jobs because merely having a HQ means few buildings and quarters for officers/staff and little else if it were at Vizag, they attest.

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