ANDHRA PRADESH

Renigunta-Tirupati second line nearing completion

TIRUPATI, DEC. 6. The bottleneck in the form of a single track in the Tirupati-Renigunta section is set to become history in a fortnight, to be precise from December 21, with the opening of the second track.

This will spare commuters the agony of their train being detained at Renigunta. Being the major junction, where tracks from Guntakal, Gudur and Chennai converge to head towards Tirupati, the single track in this 11-km section tests one's patience with detention becoming a routine affair.

The problem peaks at dawn and dusk, when half a dozen trains arrive into and leave Tirupati in a gap of one hour. Thankfully, the much-needed doubling project was sanctioned last year.

A sum of Rs. 24 crores has been sanctioned for doubling and simultaneous electrification. The work is almost over and what remains is only linking of the new line to the yards at Tirupati and Renigunta. The Over-Head Equipment (OHE) is also being modified with a change in the alignment of roads (tracks). All platforms have been extended to accommodate 24-coach trains.

Modern signal system

The Lever-operated signalling system, whereby a lever is pulled manually, will give way to Panel inter-locking system, where a gentle push of a knob is enough. Tirupati is said to be the sixth in the SC Railway after Secunderabad, Kazipet, Dornakal, Vijayawada and Krishna Canal to have this system.

The system is similar to the Route-relay interlocking in Vijayawada, the difference being that the control vests with the cabins at either end of this station, while in the latter, the operation is controlled at a single point, thus ensuring easy monitoring and quick decision-making.

The Commissioner of Railway Safety (CRS) has inspected the track last week and gave his nod over its fitness.

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