Team Blitz India
NEW DELHI: Kerala is the beneficiary of a “phenomenal” budget allocation of Rs 2,744 crore for rail development, according to Minister for Railways Ashwini Vaishnaw.
The amount is seven times the Rs 372 crore earmarked by the UPA government during 2009-14, he said while addressing a press conference in Thiruvananthapuram on February 1.
The budgeted amount is likely to be used for the ongoing projects, which includes the redevelopment of 35 stations, track development, and other infrastructural projects.
Southern Railway is now laying priority on completing a major portion of the track development work before monsoon sets in this year.
Southern Railway’s present network covers the states of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Puducherry, and a small portion of Andhra Pradesh. It extends from Mangalore on the west coast and Kanyakumari in the South to Renigunta in the suburb of Tirupati in the Northwest and Gudur in the Northeast, which is also in Tirupati district of Andhra Pradesh.
The Union Minister also said that the port-corridor project – one of the three major economic corridor projects announced in the interim budget – will benefit the state.
The project involves developing nearly 20,100km of new track. He announced that Vande Bharat sleeper and Vande Bharat metro trains would be rolled out in Kerala this year. The Ministry of Railways is currently in the process of adjusting the curves of tracks in Kerala. Once the work is completed, Vande Bharat trains would be running in the state at speeds ranging 160-180 kmph.