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No plans to close down Palakkad Division, says railway

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Thiruvananthapuram, May 13 (PTI) The railway authorities on Monday rejected reports that appeared in a section of the media about the alleged move to close down the Palakkad Division of the Southern Railway, saying that they were "entirely speculative" and "devoid of any factual basis." The Palakkad Division issued a detailed press statement in this regard categorically rejecting such news reports a day after the Kerala government registered a strong protest against the Centre's reported move to shut down the railway division.

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State Railway Minister V Abdurahiman had sent a letter to the Union Railway Minister requesting him to withdraw from the decision in this regard.

However, in a statement issued today, the Palakkad Division authorities categorically made it clear that there have been no discussions, proposals, or plans regarding the closure or establishment of any new division.

They further criticised the media, charging that such news reports have caused unnecessary confusion and concern among the public.

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"It has come to our attention that these reports are entirely speculative and devoid of any factual basis," the statement said.

Apparently indicating the Kerala minister's intense criticism, it said that the response from certain individuals of prominence, who have reacted to these reports without verifying the accuracy of the claims, only served to exacerbate the situation.

Quoting Divisional Railway Manager Arun Kumar Chaturvedi, the statement further stated that these news reports were "purely baseless" and there were no such plans for the closure of Palakkad Division.

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Registering the state government's strong protest, Minister Abdurahiman said on Sunday that the reported move to close down the Palakkad Division was an example of the union government's continued "neglect and vindictive approach" towards the southern state.

"Kerala continues to be grossly neglected in terms of railway development. Amidst this, the existing systems are also being phased out," he had alleged.

Abdurahiman also wanted the people to raise a strong protest against the Centre's reported move to close down the Palakkad Division. PTI LGK KH

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