Kerala railway line doubling work to be over next year

Our Bureau Kochi | Updated on March 31, 2013

The Ernakulam-Kayamkulam rail line doubling work through Kottayam and Alappuzha will be over by 2014-15.

Minister of State for Railways Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury has said that the work is going on as per the revised schedule and this was the first time that the Railway is providing ‘committed funds’ for track doubling in the busy corridor.

He was speaking after laying the foundation stone for installing escalators at all six platforms of the Ernakulam Junction railway station.

Chowdhury said that escalators would be installed in 15 A-class railway stations under Southern Railway. The Minister also assured that the long-pending work to upgrade Ernakulam Junction railway station will begin soon.

The Railways will coordinate with Kerala Tourism to renovate the station based on the State’s traditional architecture, he said.

On the feasibility of private participation in developing stations, he said the success rate of such ventures was not very encouraging because of the long gestation period. We are planning incentives to overcome this, he said.

There are plans to purchase 30,000 coaches in the 12th Five-Year Plan to operate more trains and to augment coaches in existing trains. Reservation counters would also be opened in rural areas of the country, he added.

Speaking on the occasion, Union Minister of State for Food and Civil Supplies K. V. Thomas sought steps to allot more mainline electrical multiple unit (MEMU) trains to Kerala.

City Mayor Tony Chammany urged the Railway Minister to take steps to develop eastern side entry of Ernakulam Junction, since the city is fast expanding to the east and commuters have to cross two congested bridges to reach the main entry on the western side.

Published on March 31, 2013

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