A file pic of the old railway line to Dhanushkodi | Photo: Mathrubhumi/Jayesh P
New Delhi: After the successful completion of several important projects one after the other, the new master plan of the Southern Railway to connect Rameswaram and Dhanushkodi in Tamil Nadu with a rail link is ready.
According to the new proposal sent by the Zonal Office to the Ministry of Railways, Rameshwaram and Dhanushkodi, are to be once again connected by the railway line, so that, tourists coming to Rameswaram will be provided with an easier option to reach Dhanushkodi.
Giving detailed information about this to ANI, Hridayesh Kumar, Divisional Engineer, Madurai Division said that this line was destroyed due to Tsunami in 1964. Now the government has proposed to rebuild it. I am standing at Dhanushkodi station. Under the new proposal, there will be 13 kilometres of elevated track from the ground in the line of 18 kilometres. This station has both tourism and religious importance and hence attracts tourism here."
Talking about the new rail link plan, Madurai Division's Assistant Executive Engineer Anand said that the railways plan to redevelop this station and connect it with the new broad gauge and electric line. This will be an 18 km line from Rameswaram and will have 3 halt stations and one terminal station. We are hopeful that the number of tourists will increase here as well. We are doing the redevelopment of Rameswaram station."
Geographically, Dhanushkodi is on the tip of Pamban island, separated from the mainland by the Palk Strait.
Notably, till December 1964, Dhanushkodi was a popular station, which was directly connected to Mandapam station in Tamil Nadu. At that time, Dhanushkodi station was an important point of contact between Ceylon in Sri Lanka and Mandapam in India, when a train also used to run by the name of Boat Mail. But, this entire rail link was destroyed in the Tsumani that hit on December 22-23 1964. During that time, hundreds of passengers along with the train staff were killed. Since then, no attention has been paid to reconnecting Dhanushkodi to the rail link. However, as per the proposal, the government is now ready to restore this rail link that will prove to be a milestone in the history of the Southern Railways and will cost more than Rs 700 crores. (ANI)