Naveen Patnaik urges PM to roll out 2 more Vande Bharat trains for Odisha

Bhubaneswar, May 18: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Thursday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to introduce two Vande Bharat Express trains on Puri-Rourkela and Bhubaneswar-Hyderabad routes.

Patnaik made this request to the Prime Minister during the launch of Vande Bharat Express train service from Puri to Kolkata, and sought the support of the Prime Minister for early implementation of the same.

Thanking the Prime Minister for launching several railway projects in Odisha, the Chief Minister said, “I would take this opportunity to request Prime Minister for introduction of a Vande Bharat Express train between Puri and Rourkela connecting Sambalpur and another connecting Bhubaneswar and Hyderabad which will facilitate faster movement of passengers between these important cities, for the benefit of our aspiring people.”

Saying that the state government is developing Puri as an international heritage centre, Patnaik said that Puri is the first city in India to have 100 per cent drink from tap facility.

The Chief Minister said he had recently met the Prime Minister and had a detailed discussion on the proposed Shree Jagannath Puri International Airport at Puri.

“We will incorporate all the suggestions given by the Prime Minister for making it a world class sea-side airport. I hope that with the cooperation and support of the PM, this airport will be ready within 3 to 4 years and the PM will come to Shreekhetra (Puri) to dedicate the airport,” he said.

Further, Patnaik also requested Modi to sanction Puri-Konark new railway line which will connect two iconic marvels of Odisha. The state government has offered 50 per cent of construction cost and entire land cost for the project, making it extremely profitable for railways, he said.

He further mentioned that Odisha has always been very proactive in supporting railway projects in the state. People of the state have also willingly pledged their invaluable land for the railway development, hoping that railway projects will offer them many new economic avenues.

The Chief Minister also requested for early introduction of passenger services in both Angul-Sukinda line and Haridaspur-Paradip line to meet the aspirations of the people of these districts.

Hoping that the bullet train dream will soon be realised, he said that introduction of Vande Bharat train is one step closer towards our aspiration of bullet trains in India.

“I am sure, with your leadership, we should soon have our own bullet trains,” he added. The Chief Minister also expressed gratitude to the Prime Minister for the new projects.

Notably, the Prime Minister has flagged off a maiden Vande Bharat Express Train on Puri-Howrah route through video-conferencing mode in presence of Chief Minister Patnaik.

Modi also either inaugurated or laid foundation stones for several railway projects worth more than Rs 8,000 crore in Odisha.

Among major projects, the Prime Minister laid foundation stones for Puri and Cuttack station redevelopment projects, inaugurated Bichhupalli-Jhartarbha new railway line and dedicated Sambalpur-Titlagarh doubling line, Angul-Sukinda new line, Rourkela-Jharsuguda & Manoharpur-Bondamunda third line to the nation.

Besides, he also inaugurated 100 per cent railway line electrification in Odisha. This will reduce the operating and maintenance cost and reduce reliance on imported crude oil.


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