With no daily train service from Mangaluru towards Karwar/ Madgaon between 3.30 p.m. and 9.30 p.m., patrons have urged the Railway Ministry to provide at least one service leaving Mangaluru at around 5 p.m. towards Karwar to benefit regular travellers.
A daily service in the evening hours would also encourage the habit of commuting by train, thereby reducing dependence on road transport and immensely contributing to environment conservation, the commuters argue. At present, only a tri-weekly service, Train No. 16515, Yeshwantpur-Karwar Express that leaves Mangaluru Junction at 4.45 pm to reach Karwar at 10.30 pm is available.
Dattatreya from Bhatkal, a regular commuter between Mangaluru and Bhatkal, said after the departure of Mangaluru Junction-Mumbai CSTM Superfast Express at 2 p.m., Mangaluru Central-Mumbai LTT Matsyagandha Express at 2.20 p.m. and Mangaluru Central-Madgaon MEMU Express at 3.30 p.m., there is no train service towards Karwar till the Ernakulam-Hazrath Nizamuddin Mangala Lakshadweep Express, that leaves Mangaluru Junction at 9.30 pm.
This is a huge gap, Mr. Dattatreya said, adding that non-availability of services in the afternoon and evening towards Karwar thus deprives coastal Karnataka people the benefits of the Konkan Railway line. He said the Railway Ministry should introduce a new train from Kukke Subrahmanya to Mumbai Dadar via Mangaluru Central leaving Central at around 5.30 pm to bridge the gap.
Echoing his points, Achyuta Moodubage, a regular traveller between Kundapura and Mangaluru, said the Railways has several options to provide daily evening connectivity between Mangaluru and Karwar.
Train No. 16575 Yeshwantpur-Mangaluru Junction Gomateshwara tri-weekly express and Train No. 16539 Yeshwantpur-Mangaluru Junction Weekly Express that remain idle at Mangaluru Junction from 5 pm till 11.30 am the next day could easily be extended till Karwar to compliment the services of Train No. 16515, Yeshwantpur-Karwar tri-weekly express, thus providing daily service between Mangaluru and Karwar.
The other alternative is to postpone the departure timing of Train No. 10108 Mangaluru Central-Madgaon MEMU Express from the present 3.30 p.m. to at least 5 p.m. Because, there was no need for three back to back services, from 2 p.m. to 3.30 p.m., Mr. Moodubage said. Otherwise, Train No. 16515 itself could be made a daily service, he argued.
The Mangaluru Junction-Mumbai CSTM Superfast Express, that leaves Junction at 2 p.m., could be made to leave at 5 p.m. from Mangaluru Central while a new service from Central to Dadar could also be introduced, he said.