TAMIL NADU

Convert Karaikudi, Mayiladuturai line into broad gauge: chamber

Tiruchi Bureau

PUDUKOTTAI: The Aranthangi Chamber of Commerce has urged the Southern Railway to take immediate action to convert the meter gauge on the Karaikudi–Mayiladuthurai section into broad gauge.

A resolution adopted at its executive meeting held here on Saturday said that this was one of the two sections where trains were being operated on the conventional metre gauge rails.

The upgrading of the sector into a broad gauge would benefit a large number of traders, office-goers and pilgrims, it said.

It also wanted the introduction of reservation system at Aranthangi railway station. In the absence of this facility, passengers have to go either to Karaikudi or Pattukottai, both located far away from Aranthangi.

Referring to the scarcity of coins in Aranthangi, another resolution urged the Aranthangi Branch of State Bank of India and the Reserve Bank of India, Chennai, to take immediate action to ensure adequate circulation of the coins. Members of the trading community, bus-crew and passengers were the worst hit due to the acute shortage of coins in the denomination of Re 1, Rs.2 and Rs.5, it said.

The president of the Chamber L. Kailasanathan presided over the meeting. The Treasurer, R. Krishnasamy and its secretary P. Gandhinathan were among those who spoke.

Karaikal-Nagore rail link

The Karaikal Union Territory Struggle Group has urged the Union Minister for Railways to include and allocate adequate funds in the Railway Budget for the Karaikal-Nagore broad gauge rail link and also for converting the Karaikal-Peralam metre gauge into broad gauge.

N. Nandhivarman, general secretary of the group, said that the group had started collecting signatures from public in the individual letters from Monday and posting the mails to Railway Minister and others. The office-bearers of the group including A.S.T. Ansari Babu had collected signatures from the public near the Head Post office here and posted mass mails to Railway Minister in this regard.