Secunderabad (SC): I.Y.R.Krishna Rao, Chief Secretary of Government of Andhra Pradesh met P.K. Srivastava, General Manager, South Central Railway and other Senior Officials today i.e., 9th April, 2015 at Rail Nilayam, Secunderabad.
Shri I.Y.R Krishna Rao, Chief Secretary, Government of Andhra Pradesh meets Shri P.K.Srivastava, General Manager, SCR at Rail Nilayam, Secunderabad
The meeting was held to review the status of the ongoing Railway projects and the survey projects in the state of Andhra Pradesh. Issues requiring attention such as land acquisition for rail projects, steps to curtail damage to rail infrastructure in view of Cyclones such as Hud Hud, also came up for discussions.
I.Y.R.Krishna Rao expressed the willingness of the State Government to get into a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) with the Railways. P.K.Srivastava on his part stated that SCR is awaiting for the final nod from the Rail Ministry to go ahead on the same. The General Manager, SCR also assured the Chief Secretary of AP that the last mile connectivity on Nandyal – Yerraguntla new Railway line project will be completed on priority, towards which adequate funds have also been allocated in the Railway Budget-2015.
Vijayawada: Metro man E Sridharan, who is looking after the planning activities of metro rail projects in Andhra Pradesh, is likely to submit Detailed Project Reports (DPRs) for the proposed metro rail projects in Vijayawada and Visakhapatnam to Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu here on Thursday.
According to sources, Sridharan, who had headed the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (DMRC) earlier, will present the two DPRs with cost estimates to Naidu here.
The State government wants to construct metro rail projects in Visakhapatnam covering a length of 39 km and in Vijayawada covering 25 kg in the first phase by 2017.
In the first phase, Vijayawada will have a 25-km metro rail from Jawaharlal Nehru Bus Station to Penamaluru. For Visakhapatnam metro, surveys have already been conducted in the identified three corridors namely, Madhurawada to NAD Junction, Thatichetlapalem to Old Post office and Gurudwara Junction to Park Hotel Junction.
After the submission of the DPRs, the Sate government will decide whether to award the construction works to DMRC or call global tenders to find out another developer.
Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, who will be touring China for six days starting from April 12, will hold meetings with Chinese companies, which have come forward to undertake bullet train project between Visakhapatnam and Chennai via Vijayawada.
The budgetary allocation of Rs. 300 crore for Metro Rail projects in Vijayawada and Visakhapatnam and Rs. 3,168 crore for capital infrastructure are expected to give the much-needed boost to development, according to the industry.
The budget manifests the focus of cash-crunched Andhra Pradesh, according to industry pundits. “Given the scenario, the allocation of more than Rs. 3,000 crore for the capital is a serious and courageous gesture of the government. In fact, we did not expect an allocation of Rs. 300 crore for Metro Rail projects in Vijayawada and Vizag.
It will give a boost to development in the capital region, besides contributing to the industrial ecosystem,” said Suresh Rayudu Chitturi, chairman of the Confederation of Indian Industries, Andhra Pradesh.
The announcement of the industrial policy will further speed up the development process according to him.
Thanks to the allocations, corporate companies will be interested in setting up units in the capital region, said T. Pardha Saradhi, president of AP Small Industries Association.
“This was how industrial development took place in Hyderabad. I am sure the same will be replicated here,” he added.
However, the total allocation is much less compared to the requirements. The State is pinning its hopes on the expected Central grant of Rs. 1,00,213 crore for capital construction and Rs. 41,253 crore for other critical infrastructure requirements.
A definitive assurance to this effect has not yet come from the BJP, the TDP’s alliance partner at the Centre.
Bifurcation necessitated an immediate need for building a world-class capital reflecting the aspirations of the people of the State.
The new capital will be a place for creativity and innovation, according to the budget statement.
Speaking to media on the immediate use of funds, Capital Region Development Authority Commissioner N.Srikanth said: “Funds will be utilised for a Detailed Project Report, development of land for farmers and construction of offices and building infrastructure.”
Visakhapatnam (VSKP): Anakapalle MP Muttamsetti Srinivasa Rao sought the laying of separate railway lines between Tuni and Kothavalasa junction via Narsipatnam, Madugula and Devarapalle to provide rail connectivity to the remote villages of Anakapalle constituency.
Discussion on Rail Budget
In the discussion on the railway budget in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday, Mr. Srinivasa Rao while supporting the Railway Budget 2015, noted that Andhra Pradesh was disappointed over the railway budget as the Railway Minister has neither sanctioned any new project nor has allocated funds to complete the pending projects.
“I was expecting an announcement on separate zone and clubbing of Waltair Division in it. But, this had not happened,” he said .
Several works including the Vijayawada-Nidadavole-Jaggayyapet-Vishnupuram and Kakinada-Pithapuram lines have not found a mention in the Railway Minister’s speech though the State Government had agreed to bear 50 per cent of the cost.
Mr. Srinivasa Rao, however, welcomed the announcement on making the A-1 grade Visakhapatnam Railway Station WiFi-enabled and the development of satellite railway stations at Anakapalle, Duvvada, Simhachalam and Pendurthy.
The policy change on ‘private sidings’ would help development of Visakhapatnam city as a logistics hub with speedier evacuation from the sea port.
He sought among other things: stoppage of all super fast trains at Anakapalle, stoppage of Mumbai LTT Express at Duvvada, provision of passenger amenities at Anakapalle, Elamanchili, Narsipatnam Road and Duvvada Railway Stations.
Mr. Srinivasa Rao appealed to the Railway Minister to expedite the process of creation of the new zone as it was promised in the AP Reorganisation Act.
welcomed the announcement on making the A-1 grade Visakhapatnam Railway Station WiFi-enabled
विजयवाडा Vijayawada (BZA): The reorganised state of Andhra Pradesh has high expectations from the railway budget of Narendra Modi’s government, as the railway connectivity is vital for some of the ambitious plans of TDP government in the state for development of the state as logistic hub.
Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu is very much keen on developing the state as port of call for the trade and commerce from South East Asian countries and railway connectivity from the proposed ports to the hinter-lands and rest of the state is essential for it to become as reality.
Separate Railway Zone to be named as South East Coast Railway for the state has been the foremost demand for the state and expectations are high from the Railway budget in that regard. However, sources in railways say that it is unlikely to materialise in the budget and the central government would only try to appease the state by promising to consider it in next railway budget. State Government is also expecting the state to provide a major share of budgetary allocation for the completion of the pending railway projects including doubling and new-lines in the state.
Some of those pending works include Vijayawada-Bheemavaram-Nidadavolu, Yerragunta-Nandyala-Jaggayyapet-Vishnupuram, Kakinada-Pithapuram. Though state-government had agreed during previous budgets to bear 50 percent of the costs for the development of Obulavaripalli-Krishnapatnam railway line for the doubling works for Guntur-Tenali, there has been not much progress till date. State government expects more funds allocated to those projects on priority basis.
The long pending Kadapa-Bangalore new railway line works ares not progressing as expected with no encouraging budgetary allocations since last couple of years, though the project was given green signal in 2008-09 railway budget. As far as doubling works are concerned, the works are under progress, but would require substantial funding for them to be put on fast track for earlier completion,’ a senior railway official told.
Andhra Pradesh has mainly two railway zones – South Central Railway (SCR) and East Coast Railways – operating in the state. Though there is a long standing demand for merger of Waltair division, currently under East Coast Railways with SCR, it has not be considered in any railway budgets till date. Now expectations are that a new zone would be created into which Waltair division will merge.
Though there has been a demand for Kotipalli- Narasapuram railway line, given the high cost, the proposal was set aside in the previous budget. People of Godavari districts are hoping it be considered this time. Another proposed new-line Srikalahasti-Nadikudi is still under survey. If it materialises, Rayalaseema and Andhra regions in the state will have a better railway connectivity and the pressure on the mainline between Nellore and Vijayawada will be decreased.
Though a wagon workshop in Khazipet was proposed, it had not materialised, neither did a medical college at Secunderabad in the last budget. Rail Neer project at Vijaywada was proposed and even 3 acres of land at Krishna canal was identified for the purpose, but the project was not given the sanction. Will it get the sanction this railway budget? people of the new capital region of the state hope so.
Development of Tirupati and Secunderabad as the world class railway stations proposed more than five years ago, though it was sanctioned, is yet to materialise. People of Tirupati, one of the most visited pilgrimage centres in the country, hope so.
In general, people of the state are expecting more compartments, which are convenient and safe, as the waiting list for almost all the trains either originating or passing through is always long now a days. Another issue they want resolved on priority is availability of quality food and water. In recent times there has been several complaints in regard to those two issues.
विसाखपट्नम Visakhapatnam (VSKP): Activists of the YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) plan to stage a maha dharna in front of the Waltair divisional railway manager’s (DRM) office on February 24 demanding a separate railway zone with headquarters at Vizag.
District YSRCP president Gudiwada Amarnath alleged that the ruling TDP government in the state and the BJP government at the Centre have failed to fulfill the longstanding demand of the people of north Andhra for a separate railway zone.
Pointing out that the Waltair division, with annual revenue of around Rs.6,000 crore, is one of the highest revenue earners among all railway divisions in the country, he said a separate railway zone will not only pave the way for the development of north Andhra districts but also both the Godavari districts and will create jobs for the unemployed youth of the region.
Speaking to mediapersons at the party office at Jagadamba Junction here on Saturday, Amarnath said that as per the AP Reorganisation Act, the Centre should have sanctioned a separate railway zone for AP but it has done nothing even nine months after coming to power.
“Both the TDP and BJP governments have been cheating the people. The TDP and BJP MPs such as K Hari Babu, Kothapalli Geetha, Ashok Gajapathi Raju, K Rammohan and Avanthi Srinivas are not putting forth the issue forcefully enough before the central government at a time when it is preparing the railway and Union budgets,” he alleged.
He also accused Vijayawada and Guntur MPs of conspiring to get the new zone for their region.
Former MLA Tynala Vijayakumar said the Waltair division has 750 acres land, which is sufficient for a separate zone. Former MLAs T Gurumurthy Reddy, Karanam Dharmasri, Karri Seetaram were present at the meet.
Rail Minister Suresh Prabhu says a comprehensive multi-modal transport solution would be evolved by integrating port, road, rail and air connectivity
नई दिल्ली New Delhi: Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu today said the ministry would form a joint company with the Andhra Pradesh government to augment rail infrastructure and modernisation and development works in the state.
The issue, he said, came up for discussion during his recent meeting with Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu in the national capital.
“When the AP chief minister was in New Delhi three days ago, we decided to form a new joint company to satisfy the state-specific needs and demands,” said Prabhu, who was here for flagging off the weekly Secunderabad-Visakhapatnam AC Express and Nanded-Aurangabad weekly express.
According to him, “a comprehensive multi-modal transport solution would be evolved under it by integrating port, road, rail and air connectivity to ensure last mile connectivity.”
Prabhu said the same could also be taken up with the Telangana government and added the aspect would be impressed upon chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao at a future meeting.
State-specific requests for rail projects would not just be limited to the annual rail Budget, but the ministry was also ready to consider them throughout the year.
He said the rail ministry was examining the proposal for bifurcation of the Marathwada region network, currently falling under the jurisdiction of South Central Railway, and clubbing it with the Central Railway.
“We are serious on this proposal and will work to ensure it becomes a reality. We see it a possibility as the region despite having enough potential had not been able to recognise the fruits of development,” said Prabhu. The Nanded division of South Central Railway comprises Manmad, Parbhani and Akola of Maharashtra. He said a proposal for connecting the temple towns of Shirdi and Tirupati would be taken up actively keeping in mind the growing passenger requests.
To a question on the demand for creating a separate rail zone for Andhra Pradesh after its bifurcation, he said, the “Railway Board is working on it”.
Union labour and employment minister Bandaru Dattatreya said the Railways should consider forming a special protection force to identify and protect land from encroachment. “e want Railways to create a land bank and utilise it for building homes to its mazdoors,” said Dattatreya.
हैदराबाद Hyderabad (HYD): The indications made by the Sivaramakrishnan committee in the economic development package for railway projects has drawn sharp criticism from experts, who said the suggestions have been made without considering the project priority and development of residual AP.
Railway officials and experts wondered on what basis the committee has made the suggestions, which if approved by the Centre, would get central assistance assured by the AP Reorganization Act. “Barring Bibi Nagar-Nallapadu electrification, which would be instrumental in improving connectivity to Hyderabad, none of the other projects mentioned are nearing completion or will bring development to the newly-formed states,” said a senior railway official who did not want to be named.
The committee had indicated eight projects under the Andhra Pradesh Transport Development Package, which would cost the Centre Rs 7,305 crore. Barring two, all other projects had been sanctioned in the railway budget. The doubling of Tenali-Repalle line and electrification of the 248 km Bibinagar-Nallapadu line were the only projects that were not sanctioned.
According to experts, the committee missed out Nandyal-Yerragunta and Krishnapatnam-Obulavaripalli lines, which are the most important new projects for Andhra Pradesh. “The Nandyal line is nearing completion. Of the 126 km, 100 km has been completed. The South Central Railway has to finish this project by March 31, but this did not get the required push in the committee’s report,” an expert said.
He also pointed out that given the uncertainty over the fate of Dugarajpatnam port, the new line from Gudur to Dugarajpatnam, which was indicated by the committee, is a low-priority project. “The Obulavaripalle-Krishnapatnam line could have been given the impetus,” he said.
Experts also wondered why importance was given to electrification of Dronachalam to Nallapadu, which is part of a bigger electrification project from Guntakal to Guntur. On the emphasis given to Nadikudi-Srikalahasti line, which was sanctioned in 2011-12, experts said it may not accrue revenue for the Railways.
“Given that the line would pass through some of the most underdeveloped areas of the state, it would be difficult from an economic viewpoint. Passenger revenues would be small, as evinced by the poor returns on same-day trains like Kacheguda-Tirupati double decker, which runs with less than 20% occupancy,” they said.
Hindujas eye public land for rail link to power plant
Visakhapatnam (VSKP): The UPA government proposes to lease out almost 65 hectares of prime land near Vishakapatnam to the multibillion-dollar Hinduja group to lay a dedicated railway line for transporting coal to its 1,040 mw power plant being set up at Pavalavasa on the east coast with over $1 billion investment.
State-run companies NTPC and Rashtriya Ispat Nigam (RINL) along with the Railways hold the title to this land bank that would now be leased out to Hindujas.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has to clear the proposal mooted by Power minister Jyotiraditya Scindia.
While the coal-fired Hinduja power venture is set to go commercial by May, coal transport to the site may prove tricky given that the CCEA is scheduled to hold its last meeting ahead of the general election after the prime minister returns from the Bimstec conference in Myanmar and the election code of conduct kicks in.
Cabinet clearance is required for any land deal involving central government departments, state-owned companies or autonomous bodies, as per the norms of the urban development ministry.
Power minister Jyotiraditya Scindia and Andhra Pradesh chief minister Kiran Kumar Reddy, who quit recently, have already approved the proposal.
At present, NTPC owns 23.4 hectares of land, while RINL owns 24.24 hectares and 17.2 hectares belongs to the Railways. Scindia has proposed that these land parcels may be leased to the Hindujas to enable them to construct a dedicated railway line from Jaggayyapalem to the project site for uninterrupted coal supplies.
NTPC, Railways and RINL have ‘in-principle’ agreed to lease out their land parcels to the Hindujas on ‘commercial terms’.
“Unless the government approves this proposal over the next few days, handing over the land bank to the Hindujas will become difficult,” a power ministry official said on condition of anonymity.
The Hindujas have already floated commercial tender seeking companies that can implement the 23 km railway line. As a backup, the Hindujas are negotiating with NTPC to use its available rail link to the Simhadri power project for the next 30 months till its own railway connectivity is achieved. The Hinduja power venture is close to NTPC’s Simhadri power plant.
While the NTPC board is not averse to such a deal, the rider is that priority on the line will be for coal movement to feed its own 2,000 mw power project.
“The Hindujas were left with few options but to accept the terms set by NTPC, including commercial terms for using the latter’s railway line,” the official quoted earlier said.
The Hindujas have committed $10 billion in investments to set up power projects across the country. The special purpose vehicle, Hindujas National Power Company (HNPCL), is implementing the first project based on coal near Vishakapatnam. In total, the group plans to build 10,000mw capacity in the country.
The Vishakapatnam project will have two units of 520mw each. The entire output will be sold to the Andhra Pradesh state grid.
New Delhi: The coastal region of Andhra Pradesh, fuming over the creation of Telangana, may get an Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), an Indian Institute of Management (IIM), a Metro Rail, an international airport, a Rail Nuclear Power Plant and a training hospital modelled on the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).
Sources involved in the process said that the Group of Ministers headed by home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde is contemplating these projects in a bid to mollify Seemandhra, but plans to tread a tightrope on a host of contentious issues, including the key one of sharing water resources with Telangana. Among the other potential goodies lined up for Seemandhra are a Metro Rail in Vizag, Monorail for Vijayawada-Guntur-Tenali corridor, a new Railway Division at Tirupati, new port, a new central university, a school of fashion technology and a few research institutes.
The sources said that while various options were under consideration, a final decision would take time. A few projects may also come up in Telangana. Hyderabad, which falls deep inside the proposed Telangana state, already has an IIT.
The GoM meeting last week discussed the water sharing issue and ordered detailed reports, Seemandhra leaders are pressing for a stable mechanism to ensure water supply to their region. Large portions of the key rivers supplying Seemandhra lie in Telangana.
Sources indicate that Shinde’s panel may consider several proposals including creation of centrally-controlled River Valley Authorities for Krishna and Godavari — the two key rivers.
Detailed discussions are set to take place on projects like Srisailam and Nagarjuna Sagar reservoirs, Rajolibanda Diversion Scheme and Polavaram irrigation project.
Srisailam is a key reservoir for drinking water and electric power in Seemandhra. The Nagarjuna Sagar, undivided Andhra’s biggest reservoir, spreads across Nalgonda district of Telangana and Guntur district of Seemandhra.
“We are trying to find out a mechanism that ensures both states get equal opportunities in terms of water resources and irrigation facilities,” said a senior Congress leader.
Karimnagar: Minister of State for Railways Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury has approved a proposal for setting up a unit of the Container Corporation of India Limited (CONCOR) – a Schedule-A Public Sector Undertaking under Ministry of Railways, near the Sultanabad Railway Station, about 26 km from Karminagar.
The Minister has conveyed this in a letter to Karimanagar MP Ponnam Prabhakar, according to a press release from the MP here on Sunday.
The CONCOR unit would be set up under the Rail Link Multi Model Logistics Park scheme. The DCC had requested the Andhra Pradesh Industrial Infrastructure Corporation (APIIC) to allocate 100 acres of suitable land with feasibility of railway connectivity for the proposed unit, he said.
Actually, Prabhakar had proposed to the railway ministry that the Concor unit should be set up near Kondagattu in Malyala mandal, but the railway authorities who had inspected the place had found it unsuitable from the operational point of view. They then chose the site at Sultanabad.
Prabhakar said he was thankful to the ministry for agreeing to set up a CC unit at Sultanabad.
Venkatanarasimharajuvaripeta or Venkatanarasimha Rajuvaripeta is a Railway Station in Andhra Pradesh on the border with Tamil Nadu, India with the distinction of having the longest name among all the stations on the Indian Railway system. It is on the Renigunta-Arakkonam section of Southern Railway.
Venkatanarasimharajuvaripeta is also frequently referred to with the prefix “Sri” making the name longer by 3 letters viz. Srivenkatanarasimharajuvaripeta by the local villagers
In railway parlance this is a flag station. It is unsignalled and passenger trains halt here.
It comes under the Southern Railway’s Chennai Division falls on the Renigunta-Arakkonam section and has the Station Code as “VKZ”
Administratively, the jurisdiction of Sri Venkatanarasimharajuvaripeta falls under the Thadukupeta Mandal of Chittor district in Andhra Pradesh.
Hyderabad: AP Govt plans to form a Special Purpose Vehicle by forming a AP State Mono Rail Corporation Limited (APMRCL) to implement monorail projects in AP. AP has been planning for monorail systems connecting the circuit cities of Vijayawada-Guntur-Tenali, Warangal-Hanumakonda-Kazipet, Tirupati and Visakhapatnam etc. The SPV will be fully owned by the State Government and the Chief Minister is all likely to nominate a Chairman of the company shortly. It is expected to be officially formed by the end of 2013.
The decision to form an SPV to implement monorail projects in Andhra Pradesh will also be taken by the State Cabinet and the administrative sanction will be accorded shortly. The state government is about to issue orders entrusting the projects to APMRCL soon the corporation is formed.
Recently the State Government has urged the Urban Development and Housing (UDH) Department for inching towards a Greater Vijayawada-Guntur-Tenali Monorail Corridor. In a recent meeting held in Hyderabad, the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh gave directions to prepare the feasibility report for the Engineering Project India Limited (EPIL), a company interested to join on the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) model. The state government is already planning to launch the Metro Railway project in Vizag under PPP model. It is also learnt that a draft project report (DPR) for the Monorail Project to connect Vijayawada-Guntur-Tenali has been prepared by the firm.
A senior AP State Government official said, “A team of engineers from EPIL would conduct a survey soon. The teams will ascertain the route for the monorail where it will be feasible. The state government is planning to introduce monorail on PPP model.”
Sources said that AP State Cabinet will approach DMRL for signing an agreement that would make the latter the general consultant for the monorail projects in Andhra Pradesh who will be will be responsible for the design, preparation of the bid document, shortlisting, and selection of contractors, supervision, and quality certification.
The cost of setting up two new major ports proposed in Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal is estimated to be around Rs 15,800 crore, according to Rail India Technical and Economic Services (RITES), the engineering and consultancy arm of Indian Railways.
In a written reply in Lok Sabha, shipping minister G K Vasan said the government had decided to set up two new major ports — Sagar in West Bengal and Dugarajapatnam in Andhra Pradesh.
According to Rites, the capital costs involved in setting up Sagar port is estimated at Rs 7,820 crore, whereas for Dugarajapatnam port it is Rs 7,988 crore.
However, feasibility study of the proposed location was also being carried out by Rites, and the concessionaires for the two projects will be awarded in the financial year 2014-15, he said.
As part of the government’s endeavour to modernise major ports, in 2012-13, 32 projects were awarded involving an estimated cost of Rs 6,765 crore, with a capacity addition of 136.75 mtpa.
During the current financial year (till date), the total number of projects awarded is five, involving a capacity addition of 48.59 mtpa, with an investment of Rs 2,045.25 crore.
The capacity of all major ports as on March 31, 2013, was at 744.91 million tonne (mt) against the traffic of 545.79 mt handled in 2012-13, with the capacity utilisation around 72 per cent.
Director of Indian Maritime University, Visakhapatnam Centre, Mr. S.C.Mishra, while delivering the keynote address at Vizag Bay Investment Summit organised by Gravity 2.0, has said integrating coastal and inland shipping with road and rail networks can make significant contribution to the regional economic development of Visakhapatnam-Rajahmundry-Vijayawada region. He also urged that Visakhapatnam needs either the elevated or underground Metro Railway System at par with Chennai/Kochi/Mumbai port cities in India, while also stating that Visakhapatnam is one of the economically forward looking base of the country with strategic and vital industry sectors from Defence, Naval, Airforce, Public Sectors, Central and State entities located in Vizag. He said waterways and coastal shipping had greater potential to encourage improvement of the region by offering an economical transport solution to industries as well as people. There was potential to move 11 million tonnes (mt) of goods annually in the region, he noted.
He specifically urged the State and Central Governments to take up enhancement of Rail and Road infrastructure projects in Visakhapatnam so that the Port City will continue to march ahead with the current pace of vital developments taken up by the city of strategic importance.
The formation of a State Maritime Board was a prerequisite for the improvement of maritime industry. The Board would not only give a single window clearance for the project suggestions but also enable the government to plan improvement of infrastructure. The State government should learn from the experiences of similar boards in Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Tamil Nadu, founder-director of Reveille Engineers Private Limited Captain Mr. Sitaram Nadimpalli said.
The Small Development Bank of India (SIDBI) expressed interest in the sector and SIDBI AGM Mr. T. Kameswar Rao said the fiscal institution would be keen to finance small and medium businesses with detailed project reports in the area of vessel design, ship building, ferry operations, and cargo liners.
The railways have cancelled some trains Friday in view of the “chalo assembly” march called by Telangana Joint Action Committee (JAC) to press the demand for separate Telangana state.
The South Central Railway (SCR) Thursday announced cancellation of seven passenger trains and partial cancellation of five passenger and three express trains. It has also cancelled almost all MMTS or local trains in the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad.
The railway authorities have cancelled trains coming to Hyderabad from various parts of Telangana to stop people from reaching the city to participate in the march.
Police have denied permission for the march but the JAC has vowed to go ahead with it, come what may.
The SCR in a statement said the train services were cancelled as a precautionary measure in the interest of security.
The Multi Modal Transit System (MMTS) train Services on Falaknuma-Secunderabad-Falaknuma; Falaknuma-Hyderabad-Secunderabad-Falaknuma; and Hyderabad-Lingampalli-Hyderabad Sections will remain cancelled.
However, MMTS services on Secunderabad-Lingampalli-Secunderabad section will run as per schedule.
DEMUs/DHMU Services running between Falaknuma-Secunderabad-Falaknuma and Secunderabad-Bolarum/Medchal/Manoharabad-Secunderabad have also been cancelled.
Mumbai-CST-Hyderabad Hussainsagar Express, leaving Mumbai Thursday, is partially cancelled between Lingampalli and Hyderabad. Bidar-Hyderabad Intercity Express is partially cancelled between Lingampalli and Hyderabad.
Trivandrum-Hyderabad Sabari Express is partially cancelled between Secunderabad and Hyderabad.
Commuters in the delta districts of Thanjavur, Tiruvarur, and Nagapattinam are in for a major disappointment with the railways announcing the operation of the new Madurai-Kacheguda Weekly Express via Tiruchi, Karur, Erode, and Salem and not on the main line.
This train announced in the Railway Budget 2012 will be introduced from May 28. Although the budget speech did not specify the train route, the Railways later announced that it will be operated via Tiruchi.
Meanwhile, the rail users, traders, consumer and service organisations of Thanjavur, Tiruvarur, and Nagapattinam districts had repeatedly urged the Railways to run this new train on the main line via Thanjavur, Kumbakonam, and Mayiladuthurai which will give these districts direct train connectivity to various towns of Andhra Pradesh. But the railways has ignored this appeal.
According to a South Central Railway release, this train will stop at Kodaikanal Road, Dindigul, Tiruchi, Karur, Erode, Salem, Jolarpettai, Vaniyambadi, Ambur, Katpadi, Chittoor, Pakala, Piler, Madanapalle Road, Dharmavaram, Ananthapur, Dhone, Kurnool Town, Gadwal, and Mahboobnagar railway stations.
The Thanjavur District Rail Users Association has expressed shock at the decision of the railways.
“Already three trains are plying to Hyderabad via Salem. Our demand for operation of this train on the main line was a just one and in the interest of the large number of commuters of the central region. The Railways has been continuously ignoring the interest of Tiruchi Railway Division”, alleged A. Giri, vice-president of the association.
A cross-section of the people of delta districts complain that the MPs of these districts failed to take up the matter properly and exert pressure on the Railways. ;The inaugural service will be flagged off from Kacheguda at 11 a.m. on May 28 and the train will reach Madurai at noon the next day.
In the return direction, the Madurai-Kacheguda weekly express will depart Madurai at 3 p.m. on May 29 and reach Kacheguda at 4 p.m. the next day.
Kacheguda-Madurai Weekly Express (17615) will leave Kacheguda at 6. 05 a.m. on Saturdays from June 1 and will arrive in Madurai at 7 a.m. the next day.
In the return direction, Madurai – Kacheguda Weekly Express (17616) will leave Madurai at 12.50 p.m. on Sundays from June 2 and will reach Kacheguda at 2.05 p.m. the next day.
These trains will comprise one AC II tier, two AC III tier, seven sleeper class, six general second class and two second class luggage-cum-brake van coaches totalling 18 coaches, the press release added.
AP Government and Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd are in the process of jointly implementing a Rs.650 Cr Phase-II Multi-Modal Transport System (MMTS) project in Hyderabad.
Both the entities would set up a special purpose vehicle (SPV) to implement the project and the cost would be shared by them in the ratio of two-thirds (AP Govt ) and one third (SCR). The already operational phase one of the project will come under the fold of the special purpose vehicle.
RVNL has invited tenders for the project. The tender was notified on April 11 and the pre-bid meeting will be held on April 23 and the deadline for submission of bids is set for May 22.
The prospective contractor must complete the project within 30 months with 180 days for defect liability phase.
The project seeks to not only strengthen the existing rail network in the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad but also create new network by helping it link city suburbs to the international airport at Shamshabad.
Through this project, the authorities plan to quadruple the tracks for certain sections, double in others, restore tracks in some sections and lay new lines. This is expected to hasten the project and help connect the city suburbs and the international airport.