The railway will resume services from Colombo to Matara from Monday with reconstruction work almost nearing, but Railway Chief Priyal de Silva requested the public to bear with the shortcomings they will have to undergo initially.
Mr. De Silva requested the public to be patient if delays and cancellations occur, as they were still working under difficulties. `We are hoping to carry out office and school services as normal, but some railway services on the coastal line might be interrupted due to trains transporting reconstruction goods and varying speed limits due to damages to the signalling system,` he said adding that trains travelling between Kalutara North, Payagala and Beruwala as well as Ambalangoda, Kahawa and Hikkudawa stations might face delays.
The GMR said that reconstructing the 130 km tsunami-devastated track in the South would not have been possible if not for the 1,000-strong volunteer force which did it in quarter of the time and cost it was originally estimated at.
`This is proof enough that we could depend on our own strength and not look for outsiders,` he said.
`We have brought the line somewhat back to the state it was before December 26,` said Mr. De Silva. `But we are determined to make it better than before by developing the tracks to increase speed and the existing signalling and communicating system`.
Rs. 450 million have been spent on reconstructing the railway lines in the South, which had been originally estimated for Rs. 1,800 million.