Chennai: The first of trains pulling water wagons to Chennai will leave from Jolarpettai railway station today, according to Southern Railway officials. Sources from Railways revealed that about 50 wagons having a capacity of 50 kilolitres would transport 2.5 million litres in a trip.
“The water special train is being filled at Jolarpettai now,” a senior Railway official told News Today this afternoon. “Once it is fully loaded, it is likely to leave for Villivakkam this evening. It may take about five to six hours to reach the city.”
To conduct its everyday operations, Southern Railway depends on Chennai Metrowater. However, with the water crisis hitting the city hard, officials took steps to bring in water-filled wagons from Chengalpet since last year.
The Tamilnadu government has allocated Rs 65 crore for the project of transporting water via trains. Reports say that Southern Railway will charge Chennai Metro Water Rs 7.5 to Rs 8.5 lakh per trip.
Sources say that once the trains reach the city, the water will be pumped to Kilpauk water works to be treated from where it will later be distributed to the rest of Chennai.
Recently, Southern Railway announced the setting up of a water recycling plant at Tambaram coaching terminal as a measure to conserve water. This is the third recycling plant while the other two exist at the Train Care Centre, Basin Bridge, and Gopalaswamy yard in Chennai Egmore railway station.
According to a data reported by Railways, since the installation of the two recycling plants in 2015, about 450 million litres of water has been saved.