Staff Reporter

KULITHALAI: To cater to the increasing demand for accommodation in express trains passing through Kulithalai, the public here have sought an increase in the allotment of berths besides seeking better amenities at the Kulithalai railway station.

Located between Karur and Tiruchi, Kulithalai town has always been a hub of activity and a large number of people commute between the town and other destinations daily for work and education.

Since there is no rail connectivity to towns on the left bank of the Cauvery between Musiri and Namakkal, many in the districts of Karur, Tiruchi and even in parts of Namakkal find it convenient to board trains at Kulithalai.

Development of Kulithalai as such and pressure on the town from other satellite areas such as Musiri, Thathaiengarpet, Thuraiyur, Manapparai, have combined to ensure that the berths to trains bound for Chennai, Bangalore and Mysore always remain waitlisted. That is for bookings done even several days prior to the trip.

“Do not see just the population of Kulithalai which itself is becoming more demanding of its quota of berths in express trains. Look at the burgeoning demand from nearby mofussil areas and they add up to a significant chunk. That is why want increased number of berths in Mangalore-Chennai Express and Myladuthurai-Mysore Express,” says advocate R. Krishnaswamy.

In the Chennai-bound train, the number of berths allotted for Kulithalai is eight while in the Mysore-bound express the town has been allotted just two berths. “Imagine our plight,” he says.

The commuters are also demanding that the Railways construct a foot over bridge at the station for the passengers to reach platform 2. Now they have to cross a track to reach platform 2 from platform 1. If any goods train is parked in the track, then the commuters have to squeeze through the under body of the wagons to get across.

“The problem is acute during nights especially since Chennai Express and Mysore Express arrive almost simultaneously many a time, forcing elders, children and the invalid to make an effort to reach platform 2. Snakes and poisonous insects infest the dimly-lit station area that compounds the danger,” points out a frequent traveller A. Babu.

“Fencing is required beyond platform 2 as it is a potential danger spot and anybody can escape easily after any crime,” he adds. “Moreover, scarce seating arrangement in that platform means additional trouble.”

The people hope that the Railways would take note of their grievances as the newly-formed Salem Railway Division has brought administration closer to the people here.