General Manager of Southern Railway Rahul Jain on Wednesday held a meeting with MPs from Trichy and Madurai here to hear their suggestions and brief them on works taken up by the railways in the two divisions.
Prominent among the issues raised at the meeting included a long-pending demand for operation of another night train to Bengaluru from Trichy .
Elaborating on the issues raised by him, Rajya Sabha MP Trichy N. Siva said that the demand had been discussed at such meetings for several years now. After Mysore Express was extended up to Mayiladuthurai some years ago, residents of Trichy were deprived of a good number of berths. A train was operated from Trichy to Bengaluru via Ariyalur, Vridhachalam and Salem, but it was abruptly cancelled when it was gaining patronage.
Suggesting revival of the service, he demanded introduction of a daily intercity express train from Trichy to Bengaluru and a train from Trichy to Salem via Karur, Namakkal and Rasipuram.
Mp. Siva also wanted operation of a weekly train to Chennai to cater to the weekend rush. Every Sunday, Trichyjunction witnessed a heavy crowd and many return disappointed when they could not get accommodation in Rockfort Express or other trains.
An express train could be operated in between the scheduled departures of Rockfort and Pandian Express trains. It is understood that the rake of Howrah–Trichy Express, which arrived in Trichy on Saturday morning lay idle till Tuesday. This rake could be used for running the weekly train to Chennai. Weekly superfast trains should be introduced from Trichy to New Delhi and Mumbai, he added.
On passenger amenities at Trichy junction, Mp. Siva suggested installation of lifts to connect the foot overbridge (FOB) in platforms 1 and 4-7. Although establishment of the FOB was welcome, many passengers, especially senior citizens and persons with disabilities, found it difficult to climb its daunting height. Coach indication boards and escalators should be provided on all platforms.
He urged the railways to develop Trichy junction as full-fledged passenger terminal with additional maintenance facility so as to start express trains to all major capital cities such as Jaipur, Bhopal, Raipur, Ranchi Bhubaneshwar, Amritsar, Dehradun, Lucknow, Patna,and Guwahati.
Perambalur MP T.R. Parivendhar urged the railways to build a new railway line connecting Ariyalur-Perambalur-Thuraiyur-Namakkal to meet a long-felt need of the people of the region.
Villupuram MP D. Ravikumar urged Southern Railway to extend Trichy-Cuddalore NT and Trichy -Vridhachalam trains to Villupuram junction as there was no train between Villupuram and Trichy in the morning. All express trains running between Chennai and Madurai should halt at Tindivanam and Ulundurpet.
Tejas Express should halt at Villupuram junction. A new train should be operated between Villupuram and Chennai in the morning for the benefit of office goers. Besides, an electric train should be operated between Tambaram and Villupuram, he said.
A Southern Railway press release issued after the meeting, which was not open to media, said Mp. Jain told the MPs that their suggestions and views would be given due consideration. Suggestions, which were beyond the powers of the zone, would be forwarded to the Railway Board.
At the meeting, Mp. Siva said, he was nominated coordinator of MPs of Trichy Division and Tenkasi MP Dhanush M. Kumar for MPs of Madurai Division.