Whitefield gets another train to deal with peak-hour rush

DEMU train service launched between Baiyappanahalli and the IT hub

A train to run exclusively between Baiyappanahalli and Whitefield, to cater to the thousands of commuters from the busy IT hub during peak hours, was launched on Friday.

The Diesel Electric Multiple Unit (DEMU) train will leave Baiyappanahalli at 8.25 a.m. and arrive at Whitefield at 8.50 a.m. — a timing that could help office-goers beat the morning traffic rush that clogs K.R. Puram and Outer Ring Road. The train, with halts at K.R. Puram and Hoodi, will cover 15 km in less than half an hour. In the return direction, the train will leave Whitefield at 6.15 p.m. Eight coaches of the DEMU train can carry up to 2,412 passengers.

“This is an old demand of those in Bengaluru ... Chief Minister (Siddaramaiah) has been meeting with us on the joint ventures for a number of projects and we are working on it,” said Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu who flagged off the train through a video link.

With this, the line now hosts more than 15 trains that can be used by local commuters, while the DEMU is the second such exclusive short-distance train. From KSR Bengaluru station, there are five trains between 7 a.m. and 10 a.m., while in the evening — between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. — six trains depart from Whitefield towards the city. “While this is a good move, we need two or three more such services to ease the traffic situation and get people to start using suburban train,” said P.C. Mohan, Bengaluru Central MP.

In all, the South Western Railway says there are 95 commuter services in and around Bengaluru, connecting various stations to Ramanagaram, Chickballapur, and Tumakuru, among others.

Ananth Kumar, Union Minister for Chemicals and Fertilizers, said, “We want the Railway Ministry to expedite the proposal for a 54-km track-doubling and electrification of the Baiyappanahalli–Hosur line as well as 27-km Yeshwantpur–Channasandra stretch which can be the suburban line to the airport.”

He said the suburban train system can take off in a big way if the State government allots 40 acres from NGEF land at Baiyappanahalli for maintenance workshops and another 9.6 acres of land from the erstwhile Binny Mills for an operations centre.

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Printable version | Feb 17, 2020 9:21:26 AM |

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