SALEM: Salem-Karur railway line project is on the track to progress.
Though land acquisition process delayed the project, work on the line is in full swing.
The project, sanctioned in 1996-97, includes laying a new broadgauge line for a length of 85 km between Salem and Karur via Namakkal.
It ran into trouble when a few land owners moved court demanding more compensation. The legal disputes have been settled after prolonged negotiations and litigations. Railway officials said the new line would reduce the distance between Salem and Karur by 44 km.
The trains bound for Karur now go through Erode, a roundabout way.
The project will contribute significantly to the growth of industries in Salem and Namakkal districts.
There is high potential for freight traffic from the starch and sago, textile and poultry units in the two districts.
The new section is also expected to attract more passengers as Namakkal is a tourist/pilgrimage destination.
The officials said construction of buildings for the intermediate stations, including Rasipuram and Namakkal, had begun. Salem Divisional Railway Manager S. Mohan said the project would be completed by 2010.