KSR Bengaluru railway station returns to the SWR fold

KSR Bengaluru railway station returns to the SWR fold

The decision to wind up the IRSDC was taken by the railway ministry

The project will now be handed over to the SWR. Credit: DH File Photo

The dissolution of the Indian Railway Stations Development Corporation has returned the KSR Bengaluru train station to the South Western Railway (SWR). 

The decision to wind up the IRSDC was taken by the railway ministry, and the Railway Board has notified the same to the relevant authorities. 

“All stations managed by IRSDC shall be handed over to respective zonal railways,” the board’s deputy director said in a letter. Pending projects and related documents should be transferred to the zonal authorities, he added. The decision has given hope that railway authorities will now focus on enhancing passenger amenities rather than on the commercialisation of train stations. 

The IRSDC managed the station operations at KRS Bengaluru and introduced value-added services like aquarium. In September, the IRSDC invited bids for building Rail Arcade, a 24X7 shopping space on 15,000 square feet of open land at the entrance of the station, a move opposed by activists. 

The project will now be handed over to the SWR, an IRSDC official. “It’s left to the railway authorities to decide on the future of the project,” he added. 

Urban transport activist Sanjeev Dyamannavar said the railways must stop the increasing commercialisation of its premises and instead focus on providing amenities to passengers. 

“The SWR should immediately scrap the Rail Arcade project. Building a shopping centre at the entrance or exit road is totally unscientific. No other railway station with such limited space has gone for such projects,” he said.