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News Entry# 288195
  
Dec 10 2016 (16:03)  Anti-flyover activists want commuter rail system (www.thehindu.com)
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News Entry# 288195     
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Posted by: rdb*^  124811 news posts
The group opposing the steel flyover on Ballari Road has gone from “beda” to “beku”. Members of Citizens for Bengaluru (CfB) have turned their focus to offering alternatives to the proposed flyover, saying they want a commuter rail system to be introduced instead.
The group says a commuter rail project, which will include channelling the existing railway infrastructure, will cost less than half of Rs. 1,800 crore (the cost of the steel flyover). The group argues that the rail project can also be made operational in phases and in a shorter while. “We have 40 railway stations and 180 km of railway lines in Bengaluru and not a single commuter train. Those using the trains now are getting into slow passenger trains.
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People don’t know about them. Trains are much faster and don’t have an environmental impact,” said Tara Krishnaswamy, a CfB member.
She was speaking at a press conference here on Friday to announce the ‘#ChukuBukuBeku Rail Yatra’ on December 17 to “derail the steel flyover and demand local trains”. CfB members, including Prakash Belawadi, Naresh Narasimhan and Srinivas Alvilli, said the presence of a railway station less than five km from the airport in Devanahalli was a little-known fact, forgotten just like the suburban rail project. It has worked in other cities such as Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and Hyderabad, they pointed out.
Claiming the support of other citizens’ groups, politicians, celebrities and college students, the yatra is expected to see over 100 volunteers gather at railway stations in east Bengaluru (Bengaluru East, Baiyappanahalli, K.R. Puram, Hoodi and Whitefield), some forming human chains and the others boarding the trains to finally assemble at Whitefield. Among those said to have agreed to participate are musician Raghu Dixit, MPs P.C. Mohan and Rajeev Gowda, and BJP leaders Suresh Kumar and Aravind Limbavali.
Case adjourned
Meanwhile, the hearing on the steel flyover case at the National Green Tribunal (NGT), which was listed on Friday, was adjourned to December 20.
We have 40 railway stations and 180 km of railway lines in Bengaluru and not a single commuter train.
Tara Krishnaswamy,member of Citizens for Bengaluru
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