KalingaTV News Network
Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday demanded Metro rail lines for the Twin Cities of the state, Cuttack and Bhubaneswar.
In his letter to Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal, Patnaik informed that the combined population of both Cuttack and Bhubaneswar shall be 2.7 million by 2021, which shall necessitate a rail based Mass Rapid Transit System (MRTS).
Considering the growth of the Twin City this would be the appropriate time to commence detailed planning for the rails based city transport system in greater Bhubaneswar, he added.
The Odisha Chief Minister in the letter also demanded allocation of Rs 6,500 crore for the state in the upcoming railway budget.
He pointed out that Odisha generates an annual revenue for Indian Railways in excess of Rs 15,000 crores and yet the average route length, with a rail density (16.0) in the State is much less than the national average (20.0), and even considerably lower in comparison to adjoining States (West Bengal: 43.4 and Jharkhand: 24.3).
Patnaik demanded six new train lines in the upcoming rail budget focusing on regions that have not got the opportunity to grow in rail connectivity. The six new rail lines which he demanded are Brahmapur-Phulbani-Sambalpur, Bargarh-Nuapara via Padmapur, Bhadrachalam-Malkangiri, Talcher-Gopalpur, Gopalpur-Sangapur road and Lanjigarh-Talcher.
Naveen requested the Railway Minister to introduce a new train by the name Bakshi Jagabandhu Express to commemorate the sacrifice which Bakshi Jagabandhu Bidyadhar Mohapatra, a frontline freedom fighter of the state, has made for the nation. Notably, Odisha observed the bi-centenary year of the Paika Rebellion led by Bakshi Jagabandhu Bidyadhar Mohapatra in 2017.
The Odisha CM also urged for initiating the ‘East Coast dedicated freight corridor’ from Kharagpur to Vijaywada and ‘East-West dedicated freight corridor’ from Jharsuguda to Bilaspur to ensure seamless movement of freight between the upcoming ports (Kirtania, Chudamani, Dhamra, Astarang and Gopalpur) on the Odisha coast including the major port at Paradip and the vast northern and central hinterlands of India.
“In order to meet the traveling need of the daily commuters, DEMU/MEMU services should be introduced in Sambalpur-Jharsuguda-Rourkela, Cuttac-Paradip-Brahmapur-Balasore corridor and Rourkela-Keonjhar via Barbil,” added Patnaik.
A new train service from Puri to Mumbai via Sambalpur and Titlagarh has also become essential, Naveen mentioned in the letter.