BANGALORE: The South Western Railways (SWR) has completed the survey of the recently sanctioned Kudachi-Bagalkot line in a record time and the Railway Board too has approved the survey and entered it in the pink book.
Now the railways can request the state government to acquire land for the project and work can be started as soon as the state government hands over the land to the railways. According to the survey report, the railways will need 750 hectares for the 142 km long project that is estimated to cost Rs 450 crore. The procedures have been completed within four months after sanctioning, unprecedented in the history of the state. SWR Chief Administrative Officer Vijaya Kumaran said: “The project would be undertaken on cost-sharing basis and the state government will bear 50 per cent of the cost. It will be completed at the earliest. We will initiate the process as soon as we get the directions from the railway board.” The railway line will pass through Mudhol, Jamkhandi and Terdal before reaching Kudachi in Raibag taluk of Belgaum district. Besides facilitating passenger travel, the line will help the transportation of goods to 12 sugar factories and five cement factories. The line will also help in transporting granite, iron ore and horticultural produce from the region. The Railway Board is yet to take a decision on seven more projects that were announced in the 2010 budget. The Railway Minister in her speech had said that the railways would consider some projects on Private Public Partnership basis for the state. According to sources in the state government, the board is yet to inform the state government about the mode in which the other projects that were announced for the state would be undertaken.