The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, has approved the construction of double line with electrification between Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala and Kanniyakumari in Tamil Nadu.
The total length of the line will be 86.56 km. The estimated cost of the Project will be Rs.1431.90 crore and completion cost of Rs.1552.94 crore with 5% escalation per annum.
The project is likely to be completed in four years by 2020-21. The project will generate direct employment during construction for 20.77 lakh mandays.
The project would not only speed up the operation of goods and coaching trains, but also provide additional capacity for meeting the increase in traffic in future.
The section is heavily passenger oriented which also serve the goods traffic from nearby ports. Operations from Vizhinjam port is likely to start by 2019 and 30% of its gateway traffic is likely to be handled by Railways. Present line capacity of Thiruvananthapuram-Nagarcoil section of this route has already saturated which is causing heavy detention to trains moving towards Kanniyakumari and Chennai. Line capacity of this route needs to be enhanced to meet the demands for additional trains and smooth movement of trains through the route. Hence, doubling of Thiruvananthapuram and Kanniyakumari line needs to be taken up.