Chennai: The minority wing of the Erode district Congress committee has written to the Chairman of the Railway Board to rename Erode railway junction after E.V. Ramaswami Periyar or Thanthai Periyar, the social reformer of Tamil Nadu. The minority wing informed the Railway Board chairman in the letter on Friday that the contribution of Periyar to the development of Railways in the area should not be forgotten.
Vice President of the District Congress Committee K. N. Basha in a statement on Friday said that when the British proposed to lay railway tracks from Royapuram in Chennai to Kozhikode in Kerala, Periyar's father Venkatappa Nayikar had donated his farmland for the project.
In the letter, Basha mentioned that Venkatappa Nayikar also sent his workers to help the railway contractor to establish the railway station on Vendipalyam road.
He said that when the British were planning to expand the railway line from Tiruchi to Erode, they were not able to do as Annamalai Pillai who was the owner of 300 acres of land did not acede to the request of the British to donate the land. Basha said that it was the intervention of Periyar's father, that led to Annamalai Pillai giving the land for the railway project for Rs 1 lakh.
In the letter he said that the Erode junction railway station was established following this incident in 1925. He stated that just like Chennai Central Railway Station was renamed as Dr. M.G. Ramachandran Central Railway Station, the Erode junction should be renamed as Thanthai Periyar Railway Junction. —IANS