MPs representing the people of Vizag, who have been indulging in the game of one-upmanship for the past few years in shooting off letters to the powers that be in Delhi on issues relating to Visakhapatnam, without much success of course, have now come out into the open and trained their guns on each other. Interestingly, the war of words between the two MPs is not to solve the long-pending problems pertaining to the region but for the party ticket to the 2014 general elections, a year away, feel Praja Spandana president C.S. Rao and retired railway employee R. Rama Rao.

“Had they shown the same zeal in solving the genuine demands of the people, they could have earned their support. Instead of following up with the Centre and trying to find solutions, they are now washing their dirty linen in public,” say Mr C.S. Rao and Mr Rama Rao.

“Our MPs have forgotten their old promises and are coming up with new ones with an eye on the elections. Minister of State for Railways Kotla Suryaprakash Reddy had announced that three trains, being diverted via Duvvada would soon be re-routed through Visakhapatnam, when he flagged off two Express trains on December 15, 2012. He had also promised a halt for Garib Rath at Duvvada,” the two Praja Spandana activists said.

The Railway Board has to initiate steps on the rerouting of the trains. It is learnt that the Board had asked the Zonal Headquarters in Bhubaneswar to look into the issue. All that is needed is alteration the timings of four or five trains. “The commitment of our MPs is evident from the fact that not even one MP from the region attended the meeting convened by the East Coast Railway General Manager in Bhubaneswar recently to discuss the issues pertaining to Waltair Division,” they said. The new railway time table is an advanced stage of preparation. “If our MPs do not act immediately and insist on rerouting of the diverted trains and placing them in the new time table, people have to wait for a year to get them included in next time table. Once the elections are announced, the ‘rerouting’ of trains can be forgotten for one more year,” they feel.