On 25th feb. 2016, Hon. Rail Min. Suresh Prabhu presented their second rail budget for the year 2016-17. This Rail Budget turned out to be a consumer friendly & Basic developmental Reforms Masterpiece. Altogether the common man of India seemed to be Happy About the Railway Budget. Shri. Suresh Prabhu is famous for his deep thinking and research capabilities as well as he is also one of those exclusive politicians who are successful in being away from nonsense matters. Even in this budget, all his qualities can be be seen. He has changed the concept of Rail Budget. Before he took the charge of Rail Ministry, Railway Budgets were used to be a “New Trains Announcement Day” where nobody really cared about improving basic infrastructure, because of which Indian Railways became backward. Shri. Suresh Prabhu is exactly doing the things which IR needed.
In one of my Previous blogs, “http://wp.me/p6oSe5-S“, I mentioned what reforms should be done, to utilise the Pune Railway Station. I am glad that almost all reforms are announced in Rail Budget 2016-17. This budget is extremely benificial for Pune & Maharashtra. Some of the key Improvements as followed.
1. Pune – Nashik new rail line: Yes, its true. The 2 decade long demand is finally commissioned in this budget. It will be a 265 Kms. Long route with 25 Railway Stations. The Railway Line will start from Begdewadi station, 28 kms. From Pune on lonavla line and then it will take a turn towards northward to connect chakan, Rajgurunagar, Pabala, Manchar, Narayangaon, Aalepahata, Pimpalgaon, Sangamner, Malvad, Nandur, Shingote, Sinnar, Jaygav & finally Nashik. Well its not clear that this will be a single Line or Double? It will be an electrified one or Non electrified. I hope it will be a double electrified route. It means we can expect to reach Nashik in 4 Hours by a superfast intercity train. The work will start in later this year. And it will be a great competition with Newly Under Construction 4 lane Highway.
This project will be done by Indian Railway & Maharashtra State partnership.
This railway line goes through 2 large MIDC’s, Chakan & Sinnar. It will be a large benifit for Automobile Industry in Pune. Talking about passenger services Pune-Nashik-Manmad will be a route of 340kms. And Pune-Daund-Manmad is 314 kms long. So many of trains going north, east and North east can be driven through this route. This route gives a chance to start new railways toward north and east.
2. Pune – Miraj line doubling and electrification: This is another important project. This route is quite important but due to single line it was not utililised to its potential. Nearly 22 passenger trains travel on this route. It is a route of 279 km. And the fastest train is Karnataka Sampark Kranti with timing of 5.2 hrs. Avg. Speed is only 52kms. On this section. This is ridiculous. If this track gets second line n electrification, then this journey can be reduced by atleast 50 minutes. It means just 4 hours will be enough for travelling. So Kolhapur can be reached in 5 hours. Further the doubling n electrification will be updated till Londa. This will make Bangalore – Pune traffic on this route faster as well as carrying freight ll be easier.
It means this line will be work to its potential.
3. Daund – Manmad Doubling : This route is a single line route. Electrification under testing. Overhead wire and polls are completed but not started yet. Ll be operational by April 2016. This route is important route which connects Pune with Delhi, East and Northern Part of the country. Trains coming from Delhi take a lot of time on this route, if its doubled and electrified, then we may save the time atleast by 15 to 20%. Which will give a faster connectivity.
4. Kolhapur – Vaibhavwadi route : This was also a decade long demand of passenger’s to connect Kolhapur with Konkan. Well it is finally commisioned in this budget. The survey of this line has done numerous times and finally in this budget this new line have got green signal. We can expect the construction of this line from later this year. 107 Kms. Long line with a huge ghat lying in between. This line is a challenge because of undulated terrains. Crossing Sahyadri’s steep slopes and get down directly into the Konkan region. This line basically meant to built for freight carrier.
In this Budget, Rail Ministry have decided to develope the railway line till ports to boost the Cargo Handling of the Ports. Jaigad Port in Ratnagiri is one of them. This will be benificial for North Karnataka, South, West and Central Maharashtra to export their products.
Talking about passenger traffic, this route will be a huge boost for the tourism of Konkan. Due to this line Konkan will came in reach of tourists from East, North East, North and Central parts of the Country. And also it will provide a better connectivity for tourists to Goa from Western Maharashtra and Central India.
Talking about Pune, currently Madgaon via Londa is 560 kms and takes 13 hours. Madgaon via Panvel is 634 Kms. And almost 13 hrs. This new route will via Kolhapur will have a distance of 580 Kms. And if the doubling of Pune – Miraj gets completed in time and doubling of Roha – Veer konkan line then we can expeect Pune – Madgaon distance in 9 hours 30 minutes. An hour better than buses.
This will boost the Development of Kolhapur and turn it into Important centre for freight handling & tourists junction.
Some of the new Trains which I have dreamt of:
A “Duronto” between Nashik and Madgaon via Pune & Kolhapur in 13 hours 30 mins.
A “Humsafar” Train from Pune to Madgaon via Kolhapur in 9 hours 30 mins. Specially on weekends for tourists.
A Superfast Intercity express between Pune – Nashik in 4 hours and Pune – Kolhapur in 5 hours.
I hope these all above projects will be completed in next 5 years and these dream trains will came in existance by next 5 years.
Lots of Excitment is on the cards..!