The PMK Tuesday said due to its sustained effort, the Centre has given its approval for a new railway line between Morappur and Dharmapuri in Tamil Nadu at an estimated cost of Rs 358.95 crore. The 36 km long new line will cut down travel distance by 81 km and link Dharmapuri with Chennai and fulfill the over seven decades dream of the people, the party said.
"The 78 year dream of people has been fulfilled, a new railway line between Dharmapuri and Morappur for a distance of 36 km will be built," PMK leader and Dharmapuri Lok Sabha MP Anbumani Ramadoss said. Releasing a letter, dated February 4, 2019, addressed to him by Railway Minister Piyush Goyal informing him of the sanction for the new line, Anbumani said it was due to his sustained effort and "pressure." In the letter, Goyal cited Anbumani's letter of October 2017 seeking a railway line between Morappur and Dharmapuri.
The Minister said he had requested Tamil Nadu to take up the project in Joint Venture model or give consent for 50 per cent cost sharing of the project. The government of Tamil Nadu, however, informed that it was not feasible to execute this new line project through JV models.
All such projects with negative Rate of Return are not sanctioned unless the State government agrees to share the cost, he said. "I am happy to inform you that despite the negative response from the State, the proposal for the new line between Morappur and Dharmapuri has been sanctioned on January 16, 2019 by the Ministry of Railways in a record time," Goyal said.
"Presently, route from Morappur to Dharmapuri is via Salem with a distance to 117 km. After construction of this line, distance will reduce to 36 km and thus there will be saving in distance to the tune of 81 km. This will also be an alternative route to industrial corridor of Bengaluru and Hosur," the Minister said.
As per the Detailed Project Report, the cost of the project including electrification is Rs 358.95 crore with a negative Rate of Return of 5.60 per cent. Anbumani said between 1906 and 1941, a narrow guage line was in operation between Morappur and Dharmapuri and after over seven decades, only now an electrified line is set to come up.
"A stone will soon be laid for the project and work will commence. I will urge the Centre to soon hold the stone laying ceremony. My 2014 Lok Sabha election promise has been fulfilled," the PMK leader said..