Emphasis on converting to electric railway - Minister | Daily News

Emphasis on converting to electric railway - Minister

Line being relaid from Anuradhapura to Omanthai now

Cabinet Spokesman, Transport, Highways and Mass Media Minister, Dr. Bandula Gunawardena said railways will be restructured and electric railways will be added to the railway system in future. The minister said this in response to a question by a journalist regarding  the frequent train derailments at the Cabinet media conference held at the Government Information Department yesterday (24).

The minister explained that rail tracks have not been redeployed or repaired for a long time and generally the tracks of any railway should be changed every 10 or 20 years and the tracks of coastal railways should be changed every five years.

While acting as a department, it is difficult for corporations to make emergency purchases through the procurement process, the minister said, adding that he hopes to import 10,000 rails soon.

The minister said that he offered technical support and methods to make the Kelani Valley railway from Avissawella to Colombo an electric railway and to work for the development of the railway. The minister said that under the Indian loan scheme, tracks will be removed and the railway line will be rebuilt from Anuradhapura to Omanthai, which was very dilapidated, at a cost of Rs.36 bn and until then, the speed limit will be 20 to 30mph. The minister further said that if the drivers disregard the speed limit, they will be disciplined and speed limits have been imposed for the safety of the passengers.

The minister emphasized that no new recruitment will be made and 3,000 persons currently recruited for the multi-purpose service will be recruited as railway workers.


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