WhatsApp Image 2023-02-26 at 9.49.20 AM (1)
WhatsApp Image 2023-02-26 at 9.49.20 AM

Too much hype over Vande Bharat?

Kochi: The arrival of Vande Bharat in Kerala has got tremendous publicity with the media tracking its movement from Thiruvananthapuram to Kannur during its trial run on Monday.
While political observers see it as a ploy to lure the voters in the coming Lok Sabha polls, the move is certainly going to help the saffron party.
Though the railways have done extensively well during the BJP rule, the Congress-led UPA governance was no way bad.
Most challenging jobs faced by the Congress governments post independence were modernization like gauge conversion, electrification, telecommunications among others. The first semi high speed train in the country was the Howrah Rajdhani Express introduced in 1969.
The fully air-conditioned 130 kms/hour speeded Garib Rath Express was introduced about two decades back in 2005 during the Congress-led UPA rule.
Duronto Express, Jan Shatabdi Express were a few other trains in this category started by Congress-led rule in the semi high speed category. But these trains came silently without any propaganda.
Trains first came to Kerala over 161 years ago in 1861 between Beypore and Tirur in Malabar, governed by the Madras Presidency.
It happened just eight years after the country’s first train ran between Bombay and Thane on April 16,1853.
Travancore Kingdom was not behind as it worked hard with the British to operate a meter-gauge service from Quilon (Kollam) to Punalur in June 1904 and to Sengottai in Tamil Nadu in November 1904.
The rulers of Cochin too worked hard and funded the Shoranur – Cochin line which came to existence in 1902.
The tourism destination of Munnar had train service in 1908 which was washed away in a massive flood in 1924. Since then not a single government has taken the initiative to restore the service in the hill station post independence. The Congress ruled for about 55 years and non Congress governments for 25, with BJP ruling for about 18 years.

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