To avoid accidents at unmanned level crossings, Railways will replace all such crossings in the country in a phased manner with road over bridges (RoBs), Union Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge said in Puducherry on Tuesday.
“The Railway Ministry has decided to construct such over bridges across the country to replace in a phased manner the unmanned level crossings. There will also be subways and manned level crossings wherever road over bridges are not feasible,” he said.
After laying foundation of two RoBs and flagging off the Puducherry-Tirupati weekly express train service in Puducherry, he said the Union Territory had been sanctioned five road over bridges.
The first two would be completed in around a year and the others in the next few years.
Mr. Kharge claimed that the UPA government at the Centre was fulfilling all the promises it had made to the people. The unprecedented and “globally unique” scheme of Food Security Act is among the various programmes evolved by the UPA dispensation and giving guarantees to the people, he said.
Around Rs. 1.43 lakh crore had been earmarked as subsidy for implementation of food security. Several other schemes, including the midday meal programme, compulsory education and national rural employment guarantee scheme were evolved and implemented for the benefit of the people, he said.
Mr. Kharge said it was “unfortunate” for some States to claim the Food Security programme was theirs just by contributing a subsidy of Rs. one or Rs. two.
He lauded the “persuasive initiative” of Minister of State in Prime Minister’s Office V. Narayanasamy to ensure improved railway services and infrastructure for Puducherry, saying the Ministry had provided Rs. five crore to each of the two RoBs.
Asserting that Puducherry needs more connectivity to various state capitals, he said new train services had already been introduced within a short span of time, linking the Union Territory to Kanyakumari and now Tirupati.
The weekly Mangalore Central-Tiruchirapalli express would soon be introduced, demonstrating that promises given to Puducherry are being fulfilled, he said.
Mr. Narayanasamy regretted that the Puducherry government had not earmarked any amount for constructing the two RoBs, though it should have provided 50 per cent of the total cost. The Centre had borne the full cost, he said.