‘DEMU passenger could be extended to Salem'

Elated over the prospects of a new broad gauge line between Karur and Salem for passenger train services around June or July, train travellers in Karur region have pressed for direct link service connecting Karur, Namakkal and Salem with destination such as Tiruchi, Madurai, Dindigul, and Bangalore.

Railways need not look around for coaches as the rolling stock might be utilised judiciously for the purpose, commuters aver.

The DEMU passenger service that leaves Karur Junction at 6.50 hrs for Tiruchi returns to Karur at 11-30 hrs and all through the day waits at Karur to leave for Tiruchi only around 15-30 hrs.

Instead of waiting at Karur junction, the train could be extended, by rechristening it with a new number, to Salem. The service could leave Karur by 11.45 hrs to reach Namakkal by 12.45 hrs and Salem by 13.45 hrs.

On return it could leave Salem by 14.00 hrs, reach Namakkal by 15.00 hrs and Karur by 16.00 hrs to return to Tiruchi by 18.00 hrs.

Perhaps the train could leave Tiruchi Junction around 19.00 hrs to return to its base in Karur, pleads engineer and regular commuter V.Das Kumar of Sanapiratti.

The Kollam-Madurai Daily Passenger arrives at Madurai Junction around 5.30 hrs and that could be given a new number and the coaches can be run up to Salem via Dindigul, Karur and Namakkal as the return journey from Madurai is only slated for 21.30 hrs, says a retired Central Government employee S.Rangarajan of Karur.

Once extended to Salem, the train's arrival timing could be adjusted to link it with the departure of the Salem-Bengaluru Passenger service that leaves Salem Junction at 13-30 hrs.

There by seamless rail connectivity from Kollam to Bangalore connecting Madurai, Karur, and Salem could be ensured without much ado, he observes.

The Railways must come forward to introduce an inter city Super Fast Express connecting Tiruchi and Bengaluru, urges the president of the Karur Train Travellers Welfare Association S.Annadurai.

The train can leave Tiruchi by 6.00 hrs and can easily return to Tiruchi Junction from Bangalore by 21.30 hrs. Thereby Tiruchi, Karur and Namakkal districts, beside passengers from parts of Dindigul and even Perambalur districts could benefit as they could entrain at Kulithalai station or at Karur or Namakkal junctions en route, he adds.

Besides, Mr.Annadurai reminds the Railways of its promise to introduce a Duronto Express service between Chennai and Madurai made in the 2011-12 Railway Budget but is yet to be kept. The service could be routed through Salem, Namakkal and Karur as the Chennai-Tiruchi-Madurai route is heavily serviced.

Operate a DEMU service from Salem to Karur via Namakkal and perhaps extend that to either Dindigul or Tiruchi to serve the daily labour force that throng industrial areas such as Salem, Namakkal and Karur from interior parts of the district, Mr.Annadurai observes.