BHUBANESWAR: Nayagarh was placed on the railway network of the country on Monday when Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu formally dedicated the new line from Bolagarh Road to Nayagarh Town as part of the ongoing Khurda Road-Balangir project.The 12.8 km line was formally commissioned as Prabhu declared the section open through video conferencing from New Delhi.
Apart from unveiling the line, the Railway Minister inaugurated the Nayagarh Town Station building while flagging off the passenger train that made its first journey to the district headquarters town.
The Bolagarh-Nayagarh town stretch comprises 28 minor and three major bridges and 13 road over bridges which required 267.23 acre land. The Railways have spent about `85 lakh for construction of the Bolagarh passenger halt.
The extension of the new section will give a boost to ongoing work for the much-delayed Khurda Road-Balangir Road railway line measuring 289 km. Sanctioned in 1994-95, the commission of the line started two years back with the 36 km Khurda Road-Begunia on July 19, 2015.
The ECoR has set an ambitious target of extending the line by 40 km from both ends by March next year. It plans to connect Nayagarh to Nuagaon, about 25 km and another 14.9 km from Balangir to Baisipalli.
The total cost of the entire 289 km project is estimated at `3,005 crore and so far, the Railways have spent close to `801.7 crore. ‘’Odisha Government is not only providing free land for the project, it will also bear half the construction cost between Dasapalla and Balangir for about 177 km. The project is expected to be completed by June 2021,’’ an ECoR official said.
With the new line extended till Nayagarh, the Nayagarh Town-Khurda Road passenger will leave Nayagarh at 5 am and reach Khurda Road at 7 am. In the return direction, the train will leave Khurda Road at 7.35 pm and reach Nayagarh Town at 9.30 pm
Similarly, the Khurda Road-Nayagarh Town passenger will depart from Khurda Road at 7.45 am and reach Nayagarh at 9.30 am. In the return direction, the train will leave Nayagarh at 10 am and reach Khurda Road at 11.30 am.
Union Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan and Bhubaneswar MP Prasanna Patsani were present with Prabhu at New Delhi. At the inauguration function of Nayagarh Road Station, local MLA Arun Sahoo, Divisional Railway Manager of Khurda Road Brijmohan Agrawal and CEO of ECoR RS Dubey were present.