The much-awaited train services from Bengaluru city to Kempegowda International Airport commenced on Monday morning. The first train left KSR Bengaluru at 4.45 a.m and reached the newly-built halt station near the Airport at 5.50 a.m. The South Western Railway also operated a new train service from Yelahanaka to the KIA. Starting from Monday, the SWR is operating five pairs of trains on the route.
The train service comes as a huge relief for passengers and thousands of people working at the airport. Mr Noorulla, who has been working at the airport for eight years and boarded a train on Monday (Bangarpet to Yeshwanthpur) said, “Thousands of people are working at the airport in various divisions. Introduction of train services will help them in a big way. I bought a ticket for just ₹10 to travel from Airport to Yeshwanthpur. Train services are an economical option compared to other modes of transport, more than that it also saves a lot of time. Employees have already started circulating train schedules to the Airport in social media and more number of people will travel in coming days.”
Inaugural service from the city to the Airport was a low key affair. Rail activists, senior officials of the SWR, Member of Parliament Mr P C Mohan and security staff travelled in the first train.
Sanjeev Dyammanavar, who has been advocating for a robust train network in the city said, “For a decade, the people have been demanding for a train service to the Airport. We must thank Railways and BIAL for facilitating required infrastructure to provide the services. The halt station has several amenities for passengers. More and more people should use the services. Increased patronage will help SWR to run trains with more frequency.”
Rajkumar Dugar of Citizens for Citizens who travelled in the train said, “We are happy that finally the SWR has commenced operations to the Airport. There is a need to build a road network from the halt station to the Highway so that a large number of villagers living nearby the Airport can also make use of the services.”
For the benefit of passengers, BIAL is operating a shuttle bus service from the halt station to the terminal area. Halt station has various amenities for the passengers that include a ticket counter, toilets, coffee shop, security system and others. Passenger Information System displaying flight departure has been displayed at the station.
Divisional Railway Manager Mr Ashok Kumar Verma said, “At present there are total of ten train services on the route that include new pairs of trains. The schedule of these three pairs of trains has been fixed based on BIAL’s suggestion. We are open to running more trains based on patronage in the coming days. The new halt station has all the required amenities for passengers. The BIAL has also built a road to the halt station and shuttle bus service has been provided.”
The official said in future people can also buy monthly passes to travel in these trains. “At present, the cost of the ticket from city to KIA ranges from ₹10 to ₹15. Ticket price becomes further cheaper when people travel using monthly passes,” the official said.
Source: The Hindu