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New rail budget nears but proposals of past years still remain on paper

Constructing a footbridge,providing escalators and a plan to transform the Railway Station into a world class facility are some of the proposals that were mooted in the previous Railway Budget.

Written by Khushboo Sandhu | Chandigarh | Published: March 3, 2012 6:16:57 am

Constructing a footbridge,providing escalators and a plan to transform the Railway Station into a world class facility are some of the proposals that were mooted in the previous Railway Budget. Of the proposals that were part of the the Railway Budget for the year 2011-12,most have not seen the light of the day.

With the preparations for announcement of the budget for the year 2012-13 underway,the city is awaiting the fulfillment of the proposals that were mooted during the last budget. A Chandigarh-Bandra train that was announced in last year’s budget is yet to see the light of day. The train was to depart from Chandigarh every Sunday and reach Mumbai the next day. Currently,the Paschim Express is the only train that plies to Mumbai.

Another announcement was made for the construction of a footbridge and installing escalators at the station. The passengers are at present required to take the stairs if they need to catch a train that is not on platform 1. For the seniors and the physically challenged this proves to be an ordeal. However,no work has started on these proposals.

The proposal for making Chandigarh a world class station is also hanging fire for the past many years. While the announcement has been repeated in more than one budget,no work has been initiated. The proposal entails facilities like a shopping mall,food court as well as connectivity to the airport. The station would also be connected to the Metro as well as the bus stands. Years after these were made,the proposals remain on paper.

The Chandigarh-Amritsar Duronto was among the few proposals that were completed. However,the train has failed to gain popularity due to odd timings and lack of stops at Jalandhar and Ludhiana.

Among other announcements that have not been completed are the rail link between Morinda and Ludhiana. Work has been on for a decade,but is yet to be completed.

For the forthcoming rail budget demand has been raised for more stoppages of the train between Chandigarh and Amritsar. It is suggested that instead of a Duronto,a Shatabdi be introduced on the route. Demand for an afternoon Shatabdi to Delhi has also been raised.

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