Colombo-Vavuniya express train service suspended
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 09 July 2003, 05:17 GMT]
Intercity express train service between Vavuniya and Colombo is to be
suspended from July 14 said Commissioner of Sri Lanka Department of Railways
in a notice sent to the Railway station officials in Vavuniya, according to
Although the express train was advertised to take only 4 hours in one direction
passengers said the train which starts from Vavuniya at 5.45am reaches takes nearly six hours
to reach Colombo. Similarly although the scheduled time start time for the Colomb0-Vavuniya
leg is 3.55pm, the train is usually 30 minutes late and reaches Vavuniya between
11 pm and midnight.
Railway authorities cite losses incurred by the service were the reason for
the suspension of service. However, sources close to the operation say
that increase of fares from Rs200 to Rs270 and the excessive delays
in running the service were the main reasons for the lack of required
passenger volume to run a profitable service.
Passengers said that if the train consistently completes the
journey in 4 hours and departs the stations regularly at scheduled times there
will be definite increase in the number of passengers who are likely to use
Vanni district Parliamentarian N. Sivasakthi Anandan and United National Party
official Mahes Thavachelvam have appealed to the Sri Lanka Government not to suspenc
the train service.