KOCHI: Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal launched a slew of infrastructure projects and passenger amenities at various railway stations across the state via videoconferencing on Monday. The union minister said Kerala was a keeper of Indian heritage and the Centre was committed to improving the state’s railway infrastructure for the benefit of the passengers. He also highlighted the need to boost the state’s connectivity with the rest of the country so as to ignite the economic activity in the area.
The railway minister claimed the railway budget allotted to the state was increasing every year. “We are committed to having a vibrant railway network in the state,” he added. Foot over bridges setup at a total cost of Rs 9.56 crore in Kollam, Kundara and Kochuveli will enhance the mobility of passengers and ease crowd dispersal at these important stations. “Lifts have been provided at Kanhangad and Aluva at a total cost of Rs 1.6 crore facilitating ease of access to platforms and concourse areas, particularly for senior citizens, sick and differently-abled passengers,” he said.
State-of-the-art video surveillance systems have been installed at 15 locations at a total cost of Rs 9.45 crore to reinforce the safety of passengers at railway stations. Railway stations such as Alappuzha, Aluva, Chengannur, Ernakulam Town, Kayankulam, Tiruvalla, Kottayam, Badagara, Kannur, Kasaragod, Palakkad Jn, Tirur, Thalassery, Kanhangad and Payyanur will be equipped with video surveillance systems, he said.
Airport type illumination of covered platforms has been provided at Thiruvananthapuram Central and Thrissur, at a total cost of Rs 42 lakh. This will enhance passenger experience and make their journey a memorable one, Piyush said. The railways has also completed platform raising work at Tanur at a cost of Rs 1.39 crore for ease of boarding and deboarding of passengers especially for the elderly and differently-abled. As part of the railways dedication to conserving power, 100 KWP solar plants were commissioned in Thrissur and Thiruvananthapuram for Rs 42 lakh.