COIMBATORE: The long awaited electric train service between Coimbatore and Mettupalayam commenced operations today.
The 32 KM stretch from Coimbatore North to Mettupalayam, electrified at a cost of Rs 28 crore, was a long pending demand of passengers of the district, including a large number of tourists visiting nearby Nilgiris district.
Eleven bogies of Blue Mountain Nilgiris Express were attached to the train, which made its maiden trip to Mettupalayam.
The electrified service had been delayed due to technical snags and two trial runs were carried out last month before before the service commenced today, railway sources said.
Six trains operate between the two destinations daily, covering the distance in 45 minutes.
However passengers wanted the speed to be increased from 90 km to at least 140 KM to reduce running time for the benefit of office goers and tourists.
Railways attributed the lower speed to the inability of the track to withstand higher speeds and load, which can be augmented in a phased manner.
Since Mettupalayam railway station does not have a lengthy platform to accommodate 26 bogies of Nilgiris Express, only 10 were coming there, after detaching 15 bogies at Coimbatore junction.
Passengers said Railways should take efforts to extend the present platform.