Railway Ministry includes Udupi station under Amrit Bharat Station Scheme for redevelopment

Station has not seen any development since Konkan Railway Corporation Ltd. commissioned the Thokur-Roha line about 25 years ago

January 11, 2024 06:58 pm | Updated 06:59 pm IST - MANGALURU

The Railway Ministry informed Konkan Railway Corporation Ltd. on Wednesday that the Udupi station was included in the Amrit Bharat Station Scheme for development.

The Railway Ministry informed Konkan Railway Corporation Ltd. on Wednesday that the Udupi station was included in the Amrit Bharat Station Scheme for development. | Photo Credit: ANIL KUMAR SASTRY

The Udupi station under Konkan Railway Corporation Ltd. (KRCL) network that was in dire need of attention, has been included in the Railway Ministry’s Amrit Bharat Station Scheme (ABSS) for redevelopment.

The Ministry informed KRCL about the inclusion of Udupi on Wednesday. Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Shobha Karandlaje thanked Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw for positively responding to her demand for redevelopment of Udupi station that serves the tourism, healthcare and education hub in and around Udupi.

None of the KRCL stations were included under ABSS when it was initially announced in February 2023 in the Union Budget, covering 1,275 stations of the Indian Railway network. It was because KRCL continued to remain a public sector undertaking under the Railway Ministry and was not an integral part of the Indian Railways.

The non-inclusion caused much heartburn among railway patrons on the west coast — Maharashtra, Goa, and Karnataka —, who chided the Ministry for leaving out the network from the scheme that was launched to mark 75 years of India’s independence.

They also said most of the stations, including Udupi and the KRCL infrastructure did not see any upgradation ever since the network was commissioned in 1998. People’s representatives too brought pressure on the Centre to include KRCL stations under ABSS.

The scheme involved creating master plans for redevelopment and executing them in a phased manner. Improving station accessibility, circulating and waiting areas, lifts, escalators, kiosks for local products, platform improvement, establishing executive lounges, etc., were part of ABSS.

KRCL’s Karwar Regional Railway Manager B.B. Nikam told The Hindu the corporation had sent proposals for development of 15 stations. Among them, Madgaon was chosen a couple of months ago and now Udupi, he said.

The redevelopment broadly includes platform improvement with covered shelters, covered foot overbridge, improved circulating and vehicle parking areas and other passenger amenities, he said. KRCL would now empanell a consultant to prepare a detailed plan after which a formal proposal would be sent to the Ministry.

The actual work could start after about nine months following completion of all the formalities and funds were released, Mr. Nikam added.

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