Karaikal Port flags off its first rail cargo
Marg Ltd’s Karaikal Port has successfully flagged off the first railway cargo. The first railway rake was flagged off by Thiru. V. Vaithilingam, Hon’ble Chief Minister of Puducherry, and Thiru E. Valsaraj, Hon’ble Minister for Home & Port of Puducherry, inaugurated the administrative block, in the august presence of Dr. Iqbal Singh, His Excellency Lt. Governor of Puducherry, Thiru V. Narayanasamy, Hon’ble Union Minister of State for Planning & Parliamentary Affairs, Government of India, Mr GRK Reddy, Chairman & Managing Director, Marg Limited, and officials from the Southern Railways. Madras Cements’ executives were also present during the event.
The first cargo transported by rail belonged to Madras Cements Ltd., and was destined towards Ichengadu in Ariyalur, where their cement factory is located. The cargo transported was pet coke and 1 rake was loaded at the newly constructed railway sidings at the Karaikal Port. Madras Cements Ltd., has regularly brought vessels through Karaikal Port in the last 8 months owing to the proximity of the port to their plants.
Mr GRK Reddy said, “The Greenfield Karaikal Port is our commitment towards catering to India’s infrastructural needs. Railway connectivity to the Private Port, in addition to the already well-established road connectivity, will enhance the economic potential of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. It’s a great pleasure to be progressing in steadfast speed on the project.”
The commissioning of the railway connectivity will result in a significant increase in the cargo evacuation rate from Karaikal Port, which will allow more efficient utilisation of the storage area, thereby enhancing the cargo handling capacity. A number of customers prefer evacuation of cargo through rail because it is faster, and large volumes can be mobilised at a time. Rail movement is specifically significant for bulk cargo, and this is here that Karaikal Port specializes in.
araikal Port, a new bulk and break-bulk cargo terminal dealing in multiple commodities, has been operational for 9 months and has handled over 0.5 million tonnes of various types of cargo, and transported by road. The nearest railway station, Nagore, is merely 1 km from the port, but is separated by the river Vettar. The bridge on this river was completed and tested on January 12, 2009, paving way for the railways to construct a railway siding in Karaikal Port.