Chennai: Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu has written to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa seeking the state government’s involvement in working jointly with railways to improve infrastructure and bring in more development.
“I look forward to her support on the same,” Prabhu said. Neighboring states of Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Karnataka have agreed to join hands with railways for joint ventures for developing railways in their states,” he said.
“Indian Railways is seeing development and investment like it has never seen before,” Prabhu said while addressing audience at Chennai Central. “We have decided to increase the investment worth over Rs 8 lakh crores in the next four years to make railways more people friendly and modernised.”
“We have increased fund allocation for Tamil Nadu to Rs 2,718 crores this year. If a programme like Talgo is successful for Delhi and Mumbai, Chennai can also be considered for high-speed rail connectivity,” he added. Prabhu said he needed the state’s support in commencing work on doubling lines between Madurai, Kanyakumari and Trivandrum.
He said that he looks forward to develop Royapuram railway station as a terminal in the city. “Along with the state government, we can develop a railway station to be better than any airport. I request the state government to provide us land for this project.”
On Sunday, the minister also inaugurated the fourth line between Tiruvalangadu and Tiruvallur, and the doubling of 25-km line between Ariyalur and Mathur.
“It is necessary to increase revenue but also to reduce costs. Electrification of lines plays a major role as one of the major goals of railways is to bring down fuel costs,” he said.