Work is afoot for the construction of ‘smart railway station’ at Vadnagar, the hometown of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The station, which is currently shut for broad gauge conversion, is getting a facelift worth Rs 9 crore. Modi is likely to visit the town in September along with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
“The new smart Vadnagar railway station will be centrally air-conditioned and will have a host of amenities such as a tourist facilitation centre, an art gallery, waiting rooms, cafe, two toilet blocks, car parking and CCTV cameras,” said Abhishek Patel, one of the engineers involved in the renovation work.
However, the rusty blue shack, famously pointed out by locals as the tea stall where Modi sold tea as a boy, will be preserved in its “original form”.
Work on the railway station is part of a major makeover push that Vadnagar has been witnessing since Modi became the Prime Minister.
The town’s skyline is now dotted with new high-rise apartments and multi-storeyed buildings, one of them being the new GMERS Hospital.
Much of the development work in Vadnagar began after the Centre, as part of the ‘Swadesh Darshan’ scheme, sanctioned Rs 99.81 crore to develop the ‘Vadnagar-Modhera-Patan tourist circuit’ in March this year.
In July, Union Tourism Minister Mahesh Sharma announced that tourist spots across Vadnagar will be developed as part of a beautification programme. As part of it, the Tana Riri memorial park, located some 2.5 km from the walled city, is also getting a facelift.
A new amphitheatre is being built in the park, and the entire around the two lakes near the memorial park are being landscaped.
Recently, the Archeological Survey of India unearthed structures resembling a Buddhist monastery, which dates back to 2nd-4th century AD, in Vadnagar, bringing to the fore the town connection with Buddhist history.