Mangaluru, Aug 3, 2015 : The Konkan Railway Corporation’s plans to increase its carrying capacity has been given the go-ahead by the NITI Aayog (National Institution for Transforming India), which recently approved the corporation’s proposal of track doubling in phases.
The NITI Aayog has also approved electrification of the KRCL network (741 km), Railway Board chairman A.K. Mittal told media as per reports .
The Konkan rails proposal to double the stretch between Thokur (near Mangaluru) and Byndoor (112 km) is under active consideration of the Railway Board. A joint venture between the Railways (52 per cent) and stakeholder States (Maharashtra [22 per cent], Goa and Kerala [6 per cent each], and Karnataka [15 per cent]), KRCL is hopeful of gathering funds for expansion, Sanjay Gupta, KRCL Director (Operations) stated
While the cost of doubling the entire route network, excluding tunnel portions, could be over Rs. 10,000 crore, KRCL would undertake the work in phases. The cost estimated for Roha-Veer doubling is Rs. 295 crore, Sindhudurg-Sawantwadi Road Rs. 250 crore and Thokur-Byndoor just above Rs. 1,000 crore. Rs. 720 crore is estimated for electrification of the entire network. Doubling and electrification would help introduce at least 10 new trains.
Over the years, the number of trains operated on the Konkan network has doubled. While KRCL facilitated operation of 30 trains, 23 passenger and seven freight, in 2004-05, it increased to 62 in 2014-15.
KRCL’s chief public relations officer Siddheshwar C. Telugu said adequate land is available for track doubling on plains. The corporation has not planned doubling the stretches owing to huge costs.