The Kanyakumari District Railway Users’ Association has urged the Central Government to extend the Thiruvananthapuram – Mangalore (16603/16604) train up to Kanyakumari. In a memorandum to Union Minister for Railways Pawan Kumar Bansal, secretary of the association P. Edward Jeni said that there was no daily train between Mangalore and Kanyakumari, although many pilgrims and tourists travel on this section.
Three overnight express trains operated daily between Mangalore and Thiruvananthapuram (train nos. 16347/16348, 16603/16604 and 16629/16630). The overnight train between Mangalore and Thiruvananthapuram (16603/16604 Maveli Express) could be extended to Kanyakumari with a halt at Neyyatinkara, Kuzuthurai, Eraniel and Nagercoil.
This would benefit tourists, pilgrims, fishermen, casual workers and students travelling between Mangalore, north Kerala, Dakshina Kanada region and Kanyakumari.
The association also urged the Railway Ministry to operate a Kanyakumari to Vasco-Da-Gama (Goa) daily train via. Ernakulam, Udupi and Karwar.
It was pointed out that a significant number of Christians running into few lakhs from Kerala and Kanyakumari, Tirunelveli and Tuticorin districts visit Goa yearly to pray at the Basilica where St. Francies Xavier’s mortal remains are interred.
These pilgrims are put to hardship due to the absence of a daily train connecting these two places.
Edward Jeni further added that currently there were three overnight express trains from Mangalore to Thiruvananthapuram and two day train services from Mangalore to Nagercoil.
Hence, the Railway authorities could extend any one of the above mentioned trains to Kanyakumari on one end and to Vasco-Da-Gama on the other end.