The Eastern Railway authorities are on the horns of a dilemma over the construction of a level crossing gate near Tallah Bridge proposed by the state government to facilitate the flow of traffic in and around the bridge. The about to come up level crossing is not only contradictory to the railway’s pledge of replacing it with Road Over Bridges, but also expected to throw train movements out of gear. A letter along with a sketch plan of the proposed bridge has been sent to Eastern Railway by the state government.

The letter dated 8 November includes proposals of two things-arrangements for dismantling of the existing Tallah bridge and construction of a level crossing gate at the railway tracks. A group of railway engineers are informed to have undertaken the task of examining the ‘General Arrangement Drawing’ (GAD) involving a thorough study of the proposal. “The railway engineers are carrying a thorough study on the management of railway tracks and the way train movements will be affected and carried following the demolition of the bridge,” informed a railway official.

“A detailed report on the examination of the GAD is likely to be submitted by the team of engineers by this week,” he added. The proposal of the level crossing, however, has left the railway authorities in a predicament. Eastern Railway has pledged to do away with the manned level crossing in its jurisdiction by constructing Road Over Bridges (ROBs) and Road Under Bridges (RUBs). The ER is not taking up the construction of new level crossing in its limits. The construction of a level crossing near the proposed Tallah Bridge is, therefore, contradictory to its policy, according to railway officials.

Another issue before the Eastern Railway is the effect of the level crossing on train movements. The railway authorities are apprehensive about the fact that the railway line near the bridge serves as a bottleneck and is one of the busiest in the area. Several numbers of circular railway trains and goods trains pass through the line. Additionally, some of the mail and express trains also undergo shunting from this line. A large quantity of parcel loading is also done from here.

Given the scenario, the level crossing which will have to be kept open for vehicles to pass through, is expected to disrupt train movements in this line, according to Eastern Railway officials. The implementation of the proposal will involve a high level permission from the officials of the railway board. The report on the GAD examination will be sent to the general manager of Eastern Railway who is expected to approach the railway board or the ministry at the centre on the subject.