Saturday, 19 November, 2011

Improving Railway connectivity from Rourkela to South India

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South India has always attracted people from all over the country in terms of job and education. Major IT hubs and a number of good educational institutes are present all over the region, the major being Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad. A number of people from Rourkela as well as rest of Odisha work in these places. So the connectivity to these places needs to be improved, the measures are as follows


Currently Rourkela-Chennai by Dhanbad/Tata-Alleppey is 1449 kms and it takes 32 hours.The journey is tiresome and hectic, the train is nothing more than a crawler till it crosses Andhra Pradesh into Tamil Nadu. This train stops at almost every station on its way just like a passenger train and is the first preference of locals in Andhra. It is always overcrowded and even AC coaches are not spared, what to talk of Sleeper and General Class. This train departs before Hatia/Tata-Yesvantpur from Vizianagram but reaches after Hatia-Yesvantpur at Visakhapatnam (Tata-Yesvantpur bypasses Visakhapatnam).

The distance between Bhubaneswar and Chennai is 1226 kms. which is covered in 21 hours 25 mins by Howrah-Chennai Mail, and in 20 hours 55 mins by Bhubaneswar-Chennai Express. If a superfast Express between Rourkela and Chennai is proposed then it can take the timing of Bhubaneswar-Chennai Express from Visakhapatnam. The total time in this journey will be around 25 hours 55 mins.


The route Rourkela-Yesvantpur is 1737 kms and is covered by 31 hours 55 mins by Hatia/Tata-Yesvantpur Express.(It includes 255 kms. of non-stop running between Vijayawada and Nellore by Hatia-Yesvantpur Express). The distance between Nellore and Gudur is 39 kms. however the slot assigned between these stations is 1 hour 19 mins., which should be reduced.

And another interesting fact is that most of the time these trains reach their stations much before their scheduled time,say 30 mins, and have to wait until their original departure time. This happened once at Gudur, when the train reached there at 7:50 pm and had to wait till 8:15 pm, the stop being only of 2 mins.During a journey 1.5 hours was lost in waiting at stations, howver the train was able to reach at its destination at time. This train can complete the journey in 28 hours 40 mins. or utmost 30 hours.The frequency of these trains need to be increased so that the whole of Western Odisha gets daily availablity to Bangalore.

I FEEL THAT THERE IS NO RESERVATION QUOTA,FOR PASSENGERS FROM ODISHA IN BANGALORE BOUND TRAINS. First the seats from Ranchi and Jamshedpur are filled up then the remaining seats are given to Odisha passengers. Most of the time people have to travel by getting Tatkal accomodation. thus paying more than their Jharkhand counterparts and adding more revenue to the Railways. Hence sufficient number of seats should be made available to the passengers of Odisha.

Further the coaches provided in Hatia-Yesvantpur Express are old, shabby and in a tottering condition. New rakes should be provided for this train.

Most of the trains going to Bangalore from Bhubaneswar take the route via Chennai which is about 1588 kms. and is covered in 28 hours 10 mins. while the same is covered by Prashanti Express in 30 hours 25 mins via Guntur,Guntakal,Dharamavaram ,Sri Satya Sai Prashanti Nilayam ,which is about 1638 kms

The superfast Bhubaneswar-Yesvantpur (via Renigunta,Tirupati,Chittoor,Katpadi) takes just 27 hours 30 mins to reach its destination covering a distance of 1518 kms.

If a superfast between Rourkela and Bangalore City via Chennai is proposed then it will take 1449 kms.+362 kms. = 1811 kms. and the total journey time will be around 29 hours.( 23 hours to Chennai and 6 hours to Bangalore)

Korba-Yesvantpur Wainganga Express via Bilaspur,Raipur and Kacheguda (Hyderabad) takes 30 hours 50 mins to cover a distance of 1602 kms. It takes 27 hours 45 mins to cover 1513 kms. between Bilaspur and Yesvantpur. If a superfast between Rourkela and Bangalore City is proposed then it will cover 1519+306= 1825 kms. in 33 hours 30 minutes.

So compiling all the above given facts, the conclusions are

 Increase the frequency of Hatia-Yesvantpur Express to 4 days a week and Tata-Yesvantpur Express to 3 days a week

 Introduce a Weekly Rourkela-Yesvantpur Superfast Express on the same timing of Hatia/Tata-Yesvantpur Express

 Introduce a Weekly Rourkela-Bangalore City Superfast Express on the same timing slot of Korba-Yesvantpur Wainganga Express. This will connect Hyderabad and Bangalore with Rourkela

 Introduce Biweekly Rourkela-Chennai Superfast Express on the timings of Bhubaneswar-Chennai Express from Visakhapatnam. This can also run up to Bangalore via Chennai

 Enroute Guwahati-Chennai Express or any train from North East or Bihar to Chennai to go via Rourkela,Jharsuguda,Sambalpur, Titlagarh,Rayagada, Vizianagram, Visakhaptnam/Duvada, twice a week. It should be noted that two Guwahati-Chennai Express travel via Tatanagar ,twice a week

By implementing any two of the above mentioned measures we can improve the connectivity of Rourkela with South India to a large extent.

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