A new railway zone for Telangana is under active consideration and it would be a reality in due course. The South Central Railway (SCR) officials felt that Telangana would benefit from the establishment of the new zone as there would be more focus on the region and several pending projects would get a fillip.
From 2006 till date, eight new rail lines have been sanctioned in Telangana region. They were intended to build a total of 883 km at an estimated cost of Rs 5,001 crore. However, only 21 per cent of the work has been completed and Rs 1,049.43 crore has been spent.
Out of the pending projects, only Peddapalli-Karimnagar-Nizamabad and Jaggayyapet-Mellacheruvu-Janpahad sections have seen satisfactory progress. While 75 per cent of the work has been completed in the former section, 48 per cent has been completed in the latter. Of the total financial expenditure, a major amount of Rs 813.78 crore has been spent on the two sections. In several sections such as — Manoharabad-Kottapalli, Bhadrachalam Road-Sattupalli, Akkanapet-Medak, Kondapalli-Kothagudam and Manguru-Ramagundam, the works have not started.
The worth of new line projects that are yet to take off is Rs 3077.5 crore. Works pertaining to double track (doubling), tripling and electrification projects in Telangana covering 248 km are also to be taken up on a war-footing. Out of the three sections, work in the Raghavapuram-Mandamarri is worth mentioning with 58 per cent being completed. Work on the other two projects is negligible. Only Rs 118 crore worth work has been completed of the total of Rs 1,295 sanctioned amount.
Rail wagon factory at Kazipet
Railway officials were optimistic that the long-pending railway wagon manufacturing unit at Kazipet would get the nod. The guidelines for the project were ready and the new State government needed to handover land to railway authorities. The wagon factory was expected to provide large-scale employment and give a boost to the economy of the region. The possibility of making Kazipet as a separate division is also on the cards as there have been demands in this regard for a long time.
The SCR has six divisions and once the new zone comes up, Guntur, Guntakal and Vijayawada are expected to be merged with it, while Hyderabad, Secunderabad and Nanded would remain with SCR. Railway officials expect the MMTS Phase II project in Hyderabad would also get started once the new government is formed.