From Our Correspondent
Itagar, April 19: Chief Minister Pema Khandu on Tuesday lauded the Centre for sanctioning eight new railway lines connecting several locations in the foothills of Aruchal Pradesh. These lines include the ones extending to Tawang, Aalo and connecting Pasighat-Roing-Tezu. On insistence from the chief minister, the Railway Ministry sanctioned the eight new railway lines –Itakhola-Seijosa (18 km), Doomdooma-msai-Wakro (96 km), Dangri-Roing (60 km) harkatia-Deomali (20 km), Lekhapani-mpong-New Khamlang-Deben (75 km) and Tinsukia to Pasighat via Kanubari (300 km). Terming it as dream come true, Khandu said things have started to move when Northeast Frontier Railway general mager HK Jaggi and other railway officials called on him at his office here. “I have to complement the Railway Ministry for the decision. The Centre has been kind in accepting our proposals,” he said in a meeting attended by WRD minister Kamlung Mossang.
The chief minister also appreciated Prime Minister rendra Modi’s “courageous decision” to extend railway network till Tawang. The prelimiry survey of Bhalukpong-Tenga-Tawang (378 km), North Lakhimpur-Bame-Aalo-Silapathar (247.85 km) and Pasighat-Roing-Tezu-Parsuram Kund-Rupai (227 km) has been completed. The detailed on-location survey will commence soon, the visiting railway officials said, adding that the survey for the eight railway lines has been sanctioned.
The chief minister further requested the railway officials to post of a dedicated chief engineer (survey) for Aruchal Pradesh for monitoring the ongoing survey works. The officials agreed. Of the eight projects, the Bhalukpong-Tenga-Tawang route is the most ambitious at a proposed construction cost of about Rs 40,000 crore. This will involve construction of 21 bridges and 145 km of tunnels. The Indian Railways proposes to construct a 29 km tunnel between Dirang and Tawang. It is estimated that the entire railway route will cut down the existing road distance of 285 km to 166 km once the project completes, informed the Railway official.
The survey of Pasighat-Tezu-Parashuram Kund-Rupai is expected to complete early as the area being plain with no steep mountains to cut through. The railway officials also gave presentation on the status of 26 km Murkong Selek-Pasighat rail road for which the land to be acquired has been identified and is in the process of acquisition, an official report informed here today.