Addressing the proposal of dividing the Waltair division in the Rajya Sabha, YSRCP MP Vijay Sai Reddy urged the centre not dismantle the 125-year-old division. He said that doing so would cause irreparable damage to the flourishing division that generates the fifth highest revenue in India. The senior YSRCP leader suggested the government should focus on flourishing the division instead of dismantling it.
Vijay Sai Reddy added that if Visakhapatnam were to be brought under the Vijayawada division as per government’s proposal, it would cause unwarranted and unnecessary problems that can be avoided. If the merger were to be done, the leader said from end-to-end, the division would measure around 350 kilometers which by mere size would be difficult to maintain and could cause operational and disaster management issues. He added that the stretch would result in delayed response to accidents and cause reduced oversight on safety and maintenance.
Elaborating on his argument, the MP further said that the Waltair Division of Visakhapatnam is a full-fledged one complete with container terminals, loco sheds, wagon workshops and 2300 staff quarters among other facilities. Therefore, continuing it wouldn’t cost the Railway Department anything. He said that shifting of headquarters would cause unnecessary expenditure since the division already functions well. The Rajya Sabha MP mentioned that as per his knowledge, there is no precedence of the Railway Department dismantling a division in history.
Vijay Sai Reddy ended his argument by saying dismantling the Waltair division would prove to be a blunder both logically and sentimentally for the people of Andhra Pradesh. He requested the centre and the Railway Minister to keep the division alive and finalise the contours of the Rayagada division, keeping in mind the sentiments of Andhra Pradesh.