Monday, July 09, 2007

Still In Waiting List . . .

This is the translated version of the Kannada article published in this blog on July 04, 2007.

It has been almost 14 years since Mangalore-Bangalore passenger train has been stopped. Still there is no sign of it starting. Upgrading the train route to broad gauge was the reason behind stopping this train then. But even after all the work has been completed there is still no sign of restarting this train route. For majority of the people from coastal region bus route is the only other alternative route to reach Bangalore. But the bus service from private as well as government operators is becoming expensive. To add to these woes there is constant deterioration of the Shiradi ghat road which links coastal region with the interior Karnataka. For the bus goers it is routine affair to get delayed by several hours to reach Bangalore because of some mishap in this ghat section. Recently most of the passengers had to spend 24 hours in travel to reach Bangalore from Mangalore which normally takes about 8 hours. Most of them had come for Karnataka CET counseling. Some got missed their counseling schedule. But thankfully next day CET cell allowed the students to select seats who had missed their counseling the day before.

This year is the centenary of railways in Mangalore. But it is ironical to note that there is no railway link operating between the Karnataka capital and Mangalore at this historic moment. The leaders who had once staged their voice for restarting this railway route seem to have gone mum. In many parts of India railway links play a important role in transportation. But it is a different case here. Apart from the prestigious Konkan railway route and railway route to Kerala there is no other railway route here in Karnataka coastal region. To sum up there is no railway link to interior Karnataka from coastal region.

The broad gauge conversion work has been completed and still no sign of train running in this route. This leads us to conclude something fishy here. Seems there is some lobby working behind this to stop the restarting of this railway route. It is even baffling to see that Mangalore which already has an international airport fails to get its important railway link. There was a time when people from coastal region used to go to Mumbai in search of job. But now situation has changed and more influx is towards Bangalore. This makes the railway line more important than ever before.

Mangalore-Bangalore train route is a traveler’s delight. You can enjoy the beauty of interior Karnataka, Western Ghats and Coastal Region at one stretch. There is no doubt that this route will boost Karnataka’s low profile tourism sector to new heights. There is a need for the State Govt to act quickly to get Center’s node to this route. It would be befitting gift to the people of coastal Karnataka on this centenary celebration of railways in this region.


Update : see this post in Bangalore Metroblogs posted by Shande



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