Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday flagged off eight new trains connecting Gujarat’s Kevadia to several other destinations pan India, which will boost commerce, tourism and generate employment.
The new trains link Kevadia to Varanasi, Dadar, Ahmedabad, Hazrat Nizamuddin, Rewa, Chennai and Pratapnagar. Kevadiya is home to the ‘Statue of Unity’ dedicated to Vallabhbhai Patel and a growing global tourist spot.
“This is a beautiful picture of ‘Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat’. It is the first time in the history of Indian Railways (IR) that so many trains from different locations of the country started their run to the same destination,” Modi said, flagging off the trains via video-conferencing.
One of the trains flagged off for Kevadia connects Kevadia to the Puratchi Thalaivar Dr MG Ramachandran Central Railway Station in Chennai. “It is a pleasant coincidence that today is the birth anniversary of MGR. His life was dedicated to the service of the poor,” Modi said, in an outreach to the state which has Assembly polls this year.
Modi also inaugurated several other railway projects in Kevadia, including the Dabhoi-Chandid broad gauge rail line, Chandod-Kevadita new broad gauge rail line, Pratapnagar-Kevadiya newly electrified section. The `811 crore and 50 km long Dabhoi–Chandod–Kevadiya section has been commissioned by converting the 18 km long Dabhoi–Chandod narrow gauge section to broad gauge and further extension of the new 32 km broad gauge railway line from Chandod to Kevadiya.
Land acquisition for the new line project was completed as late as July 2020 and the project has been commissioned only in five months. It has a total of seven stations with three major crossing stations and four minor halt stations along with eight major bridges, 79 minor bridges, nine road overbridges and 31 roads under bridges.
The sectional speed between Pratapnagar-Dabhoi has been raised from 75 kmph to 110 kmph in 75 days and the Dabhoi–Kevadiya section has been built with 110 kmph. The speed of the entire section from Pratapnagar–Kevadiya will be further enhanced to 130 kmph.
Other projects which were inaugurated are the new station buildings of Dabhoi Junction, Chandod and Kevadiya which have been designed incorporating modern passenger amenities, engineering techniques and equipment.
Kevadiya station is India’s first railway station with a Green Building Certification since the inception of construction. The environment-friendly features include LED lights and star rated branded electrical appliances which will save electricity, as well as water management through rainwater harvesting, sewage treatment plant, eco-waterless urinals and drip irrigation.