Yeshwantpur, B'luru Cantt to be made world-class stations

Rs 3,174 crore allocated in the budget for South Western Railway

Yeshwantpur, B'luru Cantt to be made world-class stations

 In the integrated Union Budget for 2017-18 presented by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday, Rs 3,174 crore has been allocated for the South Western Railway (SWR).

This is 19.17% more compared to the outlay for the SWR for project works in the railway budget 2016-17.

“We expected around Rs 2,900 crore, but we have been allocated more funds. More stress is on railway safety and development works this time,” said SWR General Manager A K Gupta.

However, SWR officials were unable to give details of specific projects mentioned in the budget, as the Pink Book was not yet tabled in Parliament. The Pink Book is the official register of the Railways that lays down to the last rupee the money allotted for a project. Gupta told journalists here that Bengaluru Cantonment and Yeshwantpur stations are among 25 railway stations which are proposed in the budget to be redeveloped into world class stations in 2017-18. In the funds meant for capital and development works, a major portion for the SWR is expected for doubling of Hubballi-Chikjajur and Hubballi-Hosapete lines.

Bio toilets

The budget has proposed to provide bio toilets on all trains by 2019, while the SWR has installed around 900 bio toilets, which is 33% of the total requirement, he said.

Out of 2,000 railway stations where solar power is proposed to be generated, 34 stations are in the SWR zone. Among 500 stations which are proposed to be made disabled-friendly by installing lifts, escalators and ramps, two A1 stations, 15 A stations and 17 B stations are in the SWR. The SWR has around 350 unmanned level crossings and an announcement has been made in the budget to eliminate all such gates by 2020, Gupta noted.

Across the country, 3,500 km of railway lines are proposed to be commissioned in 2017-18 as against 2,800 km in 2016-17.

In the SWR, 231 km of new line are being commissioned in 2016-17, while the target is to commission 165 km of new lines in 2017-18, Gupta said.

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