Mumbai, Feb 24 (Calcutta Tube) Apart from making Mumbaikars smile, Railway Minister Mamta Banerjee has also offered a lot for Maharashtra in the railway budget she presented to the Lok Sabha Wednesday. But she still came in for criticism from the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS).
There are five new Duronto air-conditioned Express trains, plus 10 new trains to different parts of India, and extension of routes and frequencies of other trains.
The new air-conditioned bi-weekly Durontos will be run between Mumbai-Secunderabad, Pune-Howrah, Mumbai-Ernakulam, Mumbai-Indore and Mumbai-Jaipur.
New trains are being introduced to several destinations to and from Maharashtra. These include the Mumbai-Sultanpur Express (weekly), Mumbai-Shirdi Intercity Express (tri-weekly), Mumbai Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST)-Haridwar AC Express (bi-weekly), Pune-Bhubaneswar Express (weekly), Pune-Ernakulam Superfast (bi-weekly), and the Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj Terminus (Kolhapur)-Solapur Express (daily) among others.
Two Karmabhoomi Trains, unreserved trains for common people, would also be run – the Darbhanga-Mumbai Express (weekly) and the Guwahati-Mumbai (weekly).
Ten existing trains have been extended from their normal routes. These include the Secunderabad-Manmad Express to Shirdi, Kakinada-Manmad Express to Shirdi, Kacheguda-Nanded Express to Akola, Mumbai CST-Jabalpur Express to Allahabad, Sangali-Miraj to Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj Terminus (Kolhapur) and Pune-Daund to Baramati.
Besides, the frequencies of two trains have been increased – the Ahmedabad-Mumbai Central Express from six days to daily and the Bandra Terminus-Delhi Sarai Rohilla from three days to four days.
The MNS has opposed the proposals for new trains between Mumbai-Sultanpur and Mumbai-Darbhanga, which would ‘increase the influx of north Indians to Mumbai’.
‘This goes against the policy of our party and we are strongly opposed to it. Instead, she should have introduced more such trains to connect north-south, east-west and coastal regions of the state,’ said MNS vice-president Vageesh Saraswat.