Incorporates all new trains announced in budget for State

All new trains announced by Railway Minister in the budget for Tamil Nadu have been incorporated in the new railway timetable, which comes into force on Thursday.

Releasing the timetable here on Wednesday, Southern Railway General Manager Deepak Krishan said the zone had fixed the time for all the new trains. The exact date of their introduction would be notified later.

The new trains are: Chennai Central – Coimbatore Duronto Express (daytime); Chennai Central – Haldia Weekly Express; Chennai Central – New Jalpaiguri Weekly Express; Coimbatore – Tirupati Intercity (Tri-weekly) Express; Madurai – Tirupati (Bi-weekly) Express; Tiruchirapalli – Mangalore (Weekly) Express; Nagercoil – Bangalore Weekly Express (via Madurai); and Puducherry – Howrah (Weekly) Express via Katpadi, Vellore Cantonment and Villupuram.

The Duronto Express to Coimbatore will be a non-stop train and will run on all days except Tuesdays.

In addition to the above trains, main-line EMU service is to be introduced from Chennai Central to Tirupati, Salem to Katpadi, and Coimbatore to Erode on all days except Sundays. A diesel EMU service will be operated daily between Mayiladuthurai and Thanjavur and a passenger service between Tiruchendur and Tirunelveli. After completing the gauge conversion of Coimbatore – Pollachi section, a passenger service will be introduced in the section. The General Manager said from July 6, the Chennai Central –Mysore Shatabdi Express would run on Tuesdays; but it would not run on Wednesdays.

The arrival and departure timings of a few trains from Chennai Egmore had been changed. The departure timing of the Shengottai Pothigai Express, Tirunelveli Nellai Express, Madurai Pandiyan Express, and Rameswaram Express would be revised from August 1. Similarly the changed arrival timings of incoming trains to Egmore would come into effect between July 30 and August 7. Till then the existing timings would continue, Mr. Deepak Krishan added.

Regarding the status of ongoing projects in the State, he said gauge conversion between Tirunelveli and Tenkasi, Mayiladuthurai and Tiruvarur, Dindigul and Palani and Palakad and Pollachi would be completed by March next year.

The doubling of Ennore- Athipet section would be completed by September. As the doubling of Chengalpattu – Villupuram section would take time, the zone had decided to go for patch doubling between certain stations in the section to avoid crossing of trains. A new railway line was being laid to Velankanni from Nagore for the benefit of pilgrims and would become operational soon. Namakkal town would be brought into the railway map by this financial year end as work on a new line between Salem and Namakkal was in progress.

Till May this year, the zone operated 239 special trains, which fetched additional revenue of Rs.13 crore.