Vadodara-SoU rail line to open by Oct 31 next year: Minister

Minister of State of Railways Suresh Angadi visits the Statue of Unity at Kevadia on Thursday. Express

Minister of State for Railways Suresh Angadi on Thursday announced that the target to complete the rail line between Vadodara and the Statue of Unity in Kevadia has been brought forward from the December 2020 deadline to October 31, 2020.

“Initially we had proposed to complete the rail line and commence the rail services to Kevadia and Statue of Unity by the end of December next year. But after a thorough inspection today, I have set a target to complete it by October 31 next year on the birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel,” Angadi said.

The rail line connecting Vadodara to Kevadia Colony would cover a distance of 78 km in total, of which a new rail line between Dabhoi and Chandod (18 km) and between Chandod and Kevadia Colony (32 km) is to be laid down. So far, 14 km of the 18 km stretch between Dabhoi and Chandod has been completed. Of the 18 km stretch, the government is yet to acquire 26.5 hectare of land which corresponds to approximately 4 kms of rail line.

“The Railways is facing problems in acquiring land...for the 4 km stretch. I have urged the state government and the district administration to meet the private parties who own the land, discuss their issues and expedite the process,” Angadi said. “Once the land has been acquired, the Railways is all set to complete the rail line and the line will be ready in the next three months.”

For the stretch between Chandod and Kevadia, which is a 32-km stretch of new rail line, 80 hectare of land including government land has been acquired, whereas 97 hectare of land is yet to be acquired. “On the stretch between Chandod and Kevadia, work is underway for the railway station at Kevadia as well two bridges connecting them, all of which fall under government land. However, the private land is yet to be acquired,” Angadi added.

The railway station at Kevadia Colony, for which is in progress, is situated 5 km away from the Statue of Unity. The proposed building is being constructed at a cost of Rs 20 crore.