The travelling public in Tiruverumbur, Thuvakudi, BHEL Township and residential localities in surrounding areas anticipate stoppage of express trains at Tiruverumbur railway station in the new time table to be announced before December.
The long-felt demand for stoppage of express trains gained more attention after Tiruverumbur station was accorded Adarsh status in the 2012 Union Budget. The hopes of the travelling public that express trains will have stoppage at the station after completion of modernisation work have been belied.
Only passenger trains continue to have stoppages at the station. Stoppage for express trains will obviate the need for thousands of rail passengers to travel up to Tiruchi junction to board long-distance trains bound for destinations such as Cochin and Chennai. Barring Jan Shatabdi, there are eight pairs of express trains that do not stop at the station.
Although operation of several trains have been suspended now due to lockdown, there is no doubt that passenger patronage will be overwhelming at the station once services are restored, said N. Anbalagan, president, Tamil Nadu Makkal Valarchi Kuzhu.
The organisation has been in the forefront in mobilising public opinion on the issue.
“We have been highlighting the demand for long. A representation was made to the Divisional Railway Manager of Tiruchi Division, and we have also reached out to the Railways Minister. There has been no update so far,” said Tiruverumbur MLA Anbil Mahesh Poyyamozhi.
The benefits of electrification on Tiruchi-Thanjavur stretch can be optimised effectively by sanctioning stoppage for express trains at Tiruverumbur station. Traffic congestion on the road can be lessened to a significant extent, according to regular passengers in the sector.
Votaries of stoppage of express trains in the Adarsh station emphasise that contemplation by the Railway Ministry for arriving at ‘zero-based’ time table, implying revision of timings for reducing number of halts in order to bring down the travel time must not allowed to become a hampering factor.
Nevertheless, the positive aspect in it is that the demand, utility of passengers and commercial viability are considered for sanctioning stoppages, according to an official.
One of the aspects of the initiative for ‘zero-based’ time table is the gradual introduction of the ‘hub and spoke concept’ with a view to facilitating easy transfers between ‘hubs’ and ‘spokes’ and inter-modal connectivity.