Monday, February 6, 2012

Railway Budget 2012 - Expectations of TN

Its February again.. the season of Budgets

Due to the Assembly elections in UP, this year, Budgets will be little delayed and probably Railway Budget may be presented by the Honorable Railway Minister Mr. Trivedi.

As far as Tamilnadu is concerned, so far the Railways have given an average preferences for schemes and new trains. When we have 10 years of Railway Ministers from our state (Mr. A.K Moorthy and Mr. R. Velu) we have introduced many new trains and new schemes. Later there is a delay of executing the projects in Tamilnadu as usual.

Tamilnadu is the Highly Revenue Generating state for Indian Railways and the percentage of malpractices and ticketless travel is too less, compared to the Northern States. Unlike other states, Tamilnadu is the only state in India, which is fully urbanized / semi-urbanized thanks to the prominent rulers who ruled the state with the view of future. In Tamilndau people are moving to every nook and corner of the state almost daily for various reasons like employment, education, business etc., Tamilnadu is the state which is having 10 Cities and 140+ Towns. Thus the occupying level of Railways is higher, in fact over whelming in Tamilnadu. This is why Railways have made an excellent network of Railway Tracks covering all the districts.

Though we are little happy to see the statistics and geographical data bases regarding the traffic of Railways in Tamilnadu, still the demand is too high and the services are too less, leaving the people unsatisfying.

So, what will be the expectations of Tamilnadu from this years Railway Budget. I have tried to summarise few of the major things:

Doubling & Electrifying TPJ-CAPE section to enable more trains at lesser transit period helps the people of southern districts to reach the Capital City. This is a very long pending request, which is not at all ignored but done with very slow pace. Now the electrification works completed upto Madurai, but operations are upto Trichy only. Faster execution of the Doubling and Electrification can help operating more new trains.

Conversion of Broad Guage from Metre Guage tracks are going on several sections and that could be speeded up and to complete within this Financial Year. This includes

1. Podanur / Palakkad – Pollachi – Dindigul

2. Thiruvarur – Thirutturaipoondi – Karaikkudi

3. Madurai – Bodinayakkanur

4. Sengottai – Punalur – Quilon

5. Virudhunagar – Manamadurai

New Trains are Expected in the following routes

1. Chennai – Madurai Day Services (opposite to Vaigai on the same timings from here)

2. Chennai – Tiruchirappalli Morning Intercity Express (Opposite to Pallavan)

3. Chennai – Palani Express (since DDL-PLN BG conversion was already completed)

4. Chennai – Coimbatore Express (via Villupuram – Attur – Salem)

5. Coimbatore – Trivandrum Central Express (Night)

6. Coimbatore – Bangalore – Mysore Express (Night) (via Hosur)

7. Coimbatore – Karaikkal Express (Night)

8. Coimbatore – Rameswaram Express (Night)

9. Coimbatore – Sengottai Express (Night) (via Erode-Karur-Madurai)

10. Madurai – Bangalore Express (Night)

11. Madurai – Mangalore Express (Night)

12. Madurai – Trivandrum Express (Night) (via Tirunelveli)

Electric/Diesel Multiple Units may be introduced on the following routes to transit mass people who are travelling daily. These trains should be shuttle service with regular frequencies and the routes may include

1. Tiruchchirappalli – Kumbakonam

2. Tiruchchirappalli – Madurai

3. Tiruchchirappalli – Karaikkudi

4. Madurai – Karaikkudi

5. Madurai – Palani

6. Coimbatore – Palakkad

7. Coimbatore – Tiruppur – Erode

8. Coimbatore – Mettuppalayam

9. Salem – Hosur

10. Salem – Vellore

11. Salem - Namakkal

New Routes under progress (Salem – Namakkal – Karur) should be quicken to complete in a faster pace

Exploration of New Routes (Coimbatore – Sathiyamangalam – Chamrajnagar; Dindigul – Bathlagundu – Bodinayakkanur; Jolarpettai – Hosur link) should be speeded up

Apart from these, the innovative scheme of Honorable Railway Minister, which is to enable Confirmed Tickets for all those who are booking Tickets and no more waitlisting is an welcomeable one.  This idea can be modified further, based on the Wait Listed Passengers. Depending on the quantum of the passengers either additional coaches or additional train can be rolled out on any particular day to accommodate all the passengers who have booked tickets.

With this the most of the major requests of Tamilnadu may get fulfilled.

Will the Railway Budget satisfy us??

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