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Rail users seek restoration of Rajahmundry-Visakhapatnam-Palasa MEMU train

‘Students, employees and daily wage earners are facing several difficulties’

September 19, 2022 01:01 am | Updated 01:01 am IST - VISAKHAPATNAM

The non-restoration of the Rajahmundry-Visakhapatnam-Palasa MEMU train is causing untold hardship to daily commuters, particularly between Visakhapatnam and Palasa. The commuters have taken to social media to vent their grievance but the authorities concerned do not seem to be interested on its revival.

The MEMU had been in operation for several years before it was cancelled along with many other trains during the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, while most of the other passenger trains have been revived after the decline in COVID-19 cases, the MEMU has not been restored. The Waltair Division of East Coast Railway (E Co R) has restored all trains.

Train no. 67295 Rajahmundry – Visakahaptnam MEMU is operated by South Central Railway (SCR) and primary maintenance of the rake is done at Rajahmundry. While SCR says that the rake was not available, E Co R authorities say they can only operate the train, only when the rake is provided by SCR, according to railway sources.

Students, employees and daily wage earners are facing several difficulties in shuttling between various destinations between Visakhapatnam and Palasa in the absence of a convenient local train.

“The MEMU train used to be very convenient for us as it had a halt at Kottavalasa. The cancellation of this train and the removal of the halt for the Guntur – Rayagada express, after it was converted into a special express, have compounded our woes. These two trains are very convenient morning trains from Kottavalasa towards Vizianagaram and Srikakulam,” says Praneeth, a student, who lives in Kottavalasa, and shuttles to his college at Vizianagaram every day.

Similarly, these two trains are very convenient for students, employees and commuters coming from Vizianagaram towards Visakhapatnam to return home in the evenings. Further, train no. 67295 has Rake Sharing Arrangement (RSA) with 67292 Visakhapatnam-Vizianagaram MEMU, 67281 Srikakulam Road-Palasa MEMU and 67282 Palasa-Vizianagaram MEMU.

“The cancellation of the MEMU has led to the cancellation of all these local trains. It’s high time the MEMU rake is operated for the convenience of daily commuters of North Andhra districts,” says Daniel Joseph, a rail activist from the city.

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