IRCON completes first phase of railway reconstruction project in Sri Lanka

The railway line from Medawachchiya to Madhu Road in the war-ravaged Northern Province of Sri Lanka, part of a 252 km reconstruction project being implemented by Indian public sector company Ircon International Limited, was commissioned and dedicated to the people of the island nation at a function yesterday.

It was a historic occasion as train services recommenced on this section after a gap of 23 years.

Sri Lankan Minister for Economic Development Basil Rajapaksa, Minister of Transport Kumara Welgama, Minister for Industries & Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen, Minister for Traditional Enterprises and Small Industries Development Douglas Devananda and High Commissioner of India Ashok K Kantha inaugurated the long awaited train services on the section.

Deputy Minister of Transport Rohana Dissanayake, General Manager of Sri Lanka Railways B A P Ariyaratne, IRCON Chairman & Managing Director Mohan Tiwari, Ircon General Manager S L Gupta and other senior officials of Government of Sri Lanka were also present on the occasion.

All the dignitaries joined the maiden trip before the inaugural ceremony. The train journey from Medawachhiya took 30 minutes to cover a distance of 43 kms and was greeted with joy by large number of residents of the area on arrival at Madhu Road.

A press release from Ircon said the railway tracks from Omanthai to Kankasanthurai and Medawachiya to Talaimannar were completely destroyed during the devastating years of war in the region.

The Government of India has extended lines of credit to build the 252 kms railway lines in Northern Province and the project was given for implementation to Ircon.

The release said the 43 km segement had been completed as per schedule at a cost of $ 81 million. The reconstructed railway track is designed with a speed potential of 120 kmph, it said.

Work is progressing on the other segments of the project and they are expected to be completed by March 2014.

Published in: on May 18, 2013 at 10:07 am  Leave a Comment  
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Banana leaves disrupt train services

After train services in the Sealdah (South) division went haywire due to banana leaves thrown on overhead wires for the second day, the Eastern Railway on Friday wrote to the state government and sought assistance to curb the menace.

“Services were disrupted on Thursday. It started all over again from Friday morning. We have no idea why it’s taking place. Trouble started on Friday with banana leaves being thrown on the overhead wires at Mathurapur, Nischindapur and Jaynagar-Majilpur around 6.15am. It took four hours to remove all obstacles and resume services,” an ER official said.

This was not all. Reports came in at 11.05 am that banana leaves had shorted out power at Hogla and Jaynagar-Majilpur all over again. It took till 4.50 pm to clear the mess. ER cancelled 19 trains during the day.

“This hooliganism started nearly a week ago. We apprehend such activities are being carried out to provoke violence and arson on railway property. There is every possibility of a violent reaction if commuters don’t get proper services,” a source revealed.

Published in: on January 20, 2013 at 6:26 am  Leave a Comment  
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