Members of the Thanjavur-Tiruchii Rail Users Association, All Traders Association of Thanjavur and Budalur Pensioners Association staged a demonstration at Thanjavur Juncion demanding halting of Cholan Express at Budalur here on Saturday.
V. Jeevakumar, legal adviser of the rail users association led the agitation. The protestors also demanded stopping of Ernakulam-Nagore and Mayiladuthurai-Tiruchi trains at Budalur. Jeevakumar said all these trains used to stop at Budalur before gauge conversion. Now after broad gauge was opened on the main line, these trains did not stop there. Budalur is an important station in Thanjavur-Tiruchi section as devotees coming from all over India get down there to go to Poondi Pudumai Matha Basilica located at Poondi, 10 km from Budalur.
He said there is an urgent demand from people for operating two trains to Chennai during day time from or via Thanjavur and two trains during night time on the main line. Platforms one and two at Thanjavur railway junction should be put to use by renovating them and broad gauge lines should be laid for the benefit of passengers, particularly elders. All the trains coming from and going to Tiruchi are overloaded. Additional trains should be operated, he said. Crossing facility for which work is going on at Alakudi station should be speeded up. Three UTS ticket counters should function round the clock at Thanjavur Railway Junction, he added.
Ayyanapuram Nadarajan, president of the association and Shanmugharaj, president of All Traders Association participated in the agitation.