After several parties raised their voices against the statement of the Union Railway Minister, Ashwini Vaishnav, the Minister clarified and said that steps have been taken to materialize the South Coast Railway Zone and promised that it will be operational soon in Vizag. The Railway Minister earlier expressed uncertainty of the new Railway zone in the parliament.
The decision, by the Railway Minister, came after YSRCP Members of Parliament, Mithun Reddy and Vijayasai Reddy, met the Minister in Delhi on Friday. In the meeting, the MPs brought to Mr. Vaishnav’s attention that even after three years of the announcement of the railway zone, by the then railway minister, there has been an inordinate delay in operationalising the zone. To this, the minister said the South Coast Railway Zone will start functioning soon in Vizag.
It should be noted that the South Coast Railway Zone was announced by the Central Government on 27 February, 2019. The new zone will comprise the existing Guntakal, Guntur, and Vijayawada divisions. The Waltair division shall be split into two parts. One part of the Waltair division will be incorporated in the new zone, i.e. in South Coast Railway, and will be merged with the neighbouring Vijayawada division. The remaining portion of the Waltair division shall be converted into a new division with headquarters at Rayagada under East Coast Railway (ECoR). The South Central Railway will comprise Hyderabad, Secunderabad, and Nanded divisions.
It should also be noted that to ease the rail traffic congestion in the South Coast Railway Zone, the Railway Board has sanctioned Rs. 106 crore for the third lane. The proposed third line will connect the Visakhapatnam city railway station to the Gopalapatnam Diamond Crossing.