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Tue Dec 11 12:33:07 IST
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Blog Entry# 3509414
Posted: Jun 09 (16:17)

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Jun 09 (16:17)   New train makes 1st trip 35 minutes late as ministers speak

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Entry# 3509414   News Entry# 340341         Tags   Past Edits
CHENNAI: At a time when the railways has come under severe criticism for poor punctuality and is trying to bring in systemic improvements, Union minister of state for railways Rajen Gohain flagged off the inaugural service of Tambaram-Tirunelveli Antyodaya Express 35 minutes late on Friday.
The train, a completely unreserved service, was supposed to start at 4.30pm from Tambaram station, as per details given by Southern Railway.
Along with Gohain, Union minister of state for finance Pon Radhakrishnan, state transport minister M R Vijayabaskar, local MLA S R Raja and MP K N
Ramachandran were present at the function.
All these elected representatives and top southern railway officials had reached the venue by 4pm and the event started at 4.10pm. The train was decked up and ready to leave. All the passengers had boarded the train.
By the time Ramachandran and Raja finished their speech, it was already 4.30pm. After that, Radhakrishnan also spoke and Vijayabaskar and Gohain soon followed suit. By then it was 5pm.
Impatient as the train was getting delayed, some passengers got down while others started taking selfies with the train.
During the event, Gohain dedicated the Tambaram coaching terminal to the nation, more than 10 months after the facility was made operational by Southern Railway. Incidentally, he also spoke about Mission Raftaar, a move to enhance train speeds.
The event was so behind schedule that Chennai divisional railway manager (DRM) Naveen Gulati had to skip his scheduled vote of thanks.
During his speech, Ramachandran demanded that some trains from southern TN should be stopped at Tirusulam for the benefit of those who had to catch flights from the Chennai airport.
Pon Radhakrishnan said the Tamil Nadu government faced a fund shortage and hence could not contribute to railway projects, because of which the Centre had decided to fund some projects completely. Gohain complimented Southern Railway on reviving heritage steam locomotives and conducting commercial runs.

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