.........BHUBANESWAR: Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik today requested railway minister Suresh Prabhu to run one express train each to Howrah and Visakhapatnam from Nayagarh Town, where a new station was inaugurated this week.
"It is suggested that the Garib Rath Express that is plying between Bhubaneswar to Howrah may be considered for extension up to Nayagarh Town," the chief minister said in a letter to the railway minister.
"Similarly, a new inter-city type train from Nayagarh Town to Visakhapatnam may be introduced to give the people of Nayagarh, Kandhamal, Boudh and Ganjam district an access to the large coastal belt of the state as well as Howrah and Visakhapatnam."
Naveen Patnaik thanked Prabhu for commissioning the railway section from Bolgarh to Nayagarh Town, which has put the latter district headquarters town on the railway map.
Stating that the Khurda Road to Bolangir railway project is of the highest priority for the state, the chief minister said the state government would continue to support the project financially as well as administratively.
The chief minister, however, said that with the commissioning of the Khurda-Bolangir line up to Nayagarh district HQ, it is now important to provide connectivity to the people of the area to the nearest large railway hub.
He said only two ordinary passenger trains now ply on the 65 km stretch from Khurda Road station to Nayagarh Town.
Naveen Patnaik also reminded Prabhu about the state government's earlier demands for recommissioning of the Paralakhemundi and Kashinagar stations on the Nuapada-Gunupur railway line, early commencement of work on the Jeypore-Malkangiri and Jeypore-Nabarangpur new lines and introduction of a daily train from Bhubaneswar/Khurda to Mumbai in the name of legendary warrior Buxi Jagabandhu.