This allays the fears of Kumbakonam-Thanjavur commuters of losing a direct train link to Chennai after the railways announced Rockfort Express would be short-terminated at Tiruchi.

The Southern Railway has finally announced that new Thanjavur–Chennai night train will be introduced from September 1. This allays the fears of the commuters of Kumbakonam-Thanjavur region of losing one of the direct train links to State capital after the railways announced that the Rockfort Express would be short-terminated at Tiruchi.

Thanjavur MP S.S. Palanimanickam told presspersons here on Tuesday that the Railway Board had taken a decision to run the Thanjavur–Chennai night train from September 1.

“The Railway Board Chairman, Arunendra Kumar, informed me today that the board has issued a notification on this,” said Mr. Palanimanickam.

The new train was announced in the Railway Budget 2013-14.

The train will be flagged off simultaneously from Thanjavur and Chennai Egmore on September 1. Eighteen coaches will be the initial composition of the train and later the number of coaches will be increased. Following demands from the commuters of Tiruchi district, the railways announced the termination of the Kumbakonam–Chennai Rockfort Express at Tiruchi Junction and stopped reservation for this train for the stations between Tiruchi and Kumbakonam from August 29.

Members of various political parties and members of traders and service organisations stopped Cholan Express at Thanjavur Railway Junction on Tuesday morning as part of the rail roko agitation demanding the introduction of the newly announced Thanjavur-Chennai over night express immediately. The police arrested 200 persons. The train was detained for ten minutes as the agitators blocked the track and shouted slogans demanding its early introduction.

S. Singaravadivel, former MP, was among those who led the agitation.

The Chennai Egmore – Thanjavur Express (16183) will leave Chennai Egmore at 11.30 p.m. and reach Thanjavur at 7.15 a.m. the next day. In the return direction, the Thanjavur – Chennai Egmore Express (16184) will leave Thanjavur at 8.45 p.m. and reach Chennai Egmore at 4.55 a.m. the next day.

Advance Reservation for the above trains will commence on August 29.

The train will stop at Papanansam, Kumbakonam, Aduthurai, Kuttalam, Mayiluduthurai, Sirkazi, Chidambaram, Cuddalore Port Junction, Panrutti, VIllupuram, Tindivanam, Melmaruvattur, Chengalpattu, Tambaram, and Mambalam.

The Chennai-Kumbakonam Rockfort Express will be operated till Kumbakonam on August 31.

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