Railway budget fails to impress coastal districts

Separate Mangalore railway division continues to remain as a dream

The maiden railway budget by Union Minister for Railways Mallikarjuna Kharge has failed to impress upon the people of Dakshina Kannada and Udupi. 

Terming the budget as disappointing, Railway Yathri Sangha (Puttur) Technical Advisor Anil Hegde told Deccan Herald that the people had asked for direct train service between Mangalore-Hubli, extension of Diesel Multiple Unit (DMU) train between Thokur and Bhatkal to Mangalore; regular run of tri-weekly Yeshvantur-Karwar train, train service between Subrahmanya and Delhi,  and regularisation of Mangalore-Ahmedabad train which is run as special train during summer and winter season. There is not even one train to Mangalore.”  

Paschima Karavali Railway Yatri Abhivrudhi Samithi President Hanumantha Kamath said that the Central government has been neglecting Karnataka state in general and coastal districts in particular when it comes to railway budget. “Once again, we have been met with step-motherly treatment. People of Dakshina Kannada district had a hope for creation of Mangalore division as the minister was hailing from Karnataka.

However, our hopes have been dashed to the ground. Extension of Diesel Multiple Unit (DMU) train between Thokur and Bhatkal to Mangalore was one of our demands. The DMU has no station at Thokur and extending it to Mangalore would have been a good move. Even intercity train service between Mangalore and Madgaon which was announced in last budget has not been materialised. Inspite of Konkan railway line passing through the region, only two trains originate from Mangalore.

We need leaders who will fight unitedly keeping aside party differences when it comes to the interest of the state.” KCCI President Mohammed Amin too said that the budget has disappointed the people of Dakshina Kannada. “Inspite of giving representations to the ministers on the demand of coastal districts, nothing has been considered.” MP Nalin Kumar Kateel said that budget has not announced anything to the district and Mangalore and is disappointing. 

Udupi

Railway Yatri Sangha Udupi President R L Dias said the railway budget is too depressing and the Railway Minister has totally forgotten the existence of the coastal districts. He alleged that there is no new extensions or sanctions. The demand to make the Bangalore-Mangalore-Karwar train as a daily has been ignored. Besides, the demand for the stoppages of Kochivilli-Amritsar and Kochivilli-Dehradun at Udupi is also sidelined. He said the parliamentarians of the areas should raise the issue in the parliament. He ridiculed the proposal to set up a coach factory at Raichur as against the demand for the same in Mangalore.  

On the other hand, MP Jayaprakash Hedge said that under the given circumstances, the Railway Minister has presented a wonderful budget. The request to run Nizamuddhin-Kottayam and Nizamuddhin-Alleppe through Konkan is under consideration, he added.

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