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Nod for survey on Ariyalur-Namakkal BG line project

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The Ministry of Railways has accorded sanction to a survey for a new broad gauge line from Ariyalur to Namakkal via Perambalur, Thuraiyur and Thathaiyengarpet.

The proposed new railway line, running to a distance of 108 km, has brightened the prospects of rail service to backward Perambalur district, which lacks train connectivity at present.

The Railway Board had recently communicated to Southern Railway General Manager and Southern Railway Construction Organisation regarding the sanction for the survey for the proposed new line at a cost of Rs. 16.20 lakh.

Thuraiyur and Thathaiyengarpet are two important towns falling under the limits of Tiruchi district.

The Southern Railway Construction Organisation, which carries out a slew of gauge conversion projects in the Southern Railway Zone, will conduct the survey.

“The Railway Ministry’s sanction to carry out the survey for the new line is a positive development,” said Perambalur Lok Sabha MP R.P. Marutharajaa.

The entire Perambalur district lacks rail connectivity at present. And the demand for bringing Perambalur under the scope of railway network has been a long standing one, he pointed out.

The Perambalur MP recalled that he met former Railway Ministers Sadananda Gowda and Suresh Prabhu and handed over separate memorandums to them appealing for rail connectivity to Perambalur. A memorandum containing the demand was also given to the President.

The proposed survey is expected to begin in a couple of months.

According to railway sources, it will be done from engineering and traffic point of view. Land required for the new project, number of bridges to be constructed and the new stations en route will come under the scope of engineering survey. Tenders will be floated to identify an agency to carry out the survey.

The traffic survey will be done by the Southern Railway Construction Organisation, said the sources. It will take into account passenger, freight and parcel movements in the proposed new line and prospective returns for the railway.

The results of the survey will be sent to the Railway Board for perusal, a senior official said.

“Since Ariyalur has a number of cement factories, freight movement in the proposed new railway line will be heavy since cement is now transported by road to different places within Tamil Nadu and neighbouring States,” Mr. Marutharaja said.

Passenger movement will be equally good since the demand for rail service to Perambalur has remained a felt need for several years now, he felt.

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