Bilaspur-Manali-Leh Railway line: Foundation of survey work laid

SRINAGAR: Srinagar-Jammu railway line may still take time to complete but that does not prevent Delhi from creating another line, more ambitious than the one in advanced stage of implementation. India’s Railways Minister Suresh Prabu on Tuesday flew to Leh and laid the foundation stone for final location survey work of Bilaspur-Manali-Leh New Rail Line.

Railway Minister Suresh Prabu after laying the foundation stone of Leh Manali Bilaspur railway line in Leh. Thupstan Chewang, Rigzin Jora, Chhering Dorjey and Dr Sonam Dawa Lonpo are also seen in the picture with the commander of Leh based army corps

“One Nation-Strong Nation the Government of India is committed to link every nook and corner of the country and bring the people of different regions more closer, and opening of Bilaspur-Manali-Leh Railway line is an important step in this direction that will certainly benefit Ladakh, besides providing an opportunity for the rest of the country fellows to meet with the great people of Ladakh and natural beauty of this unique paradise on earth,” Prabu said after inaugurating the survey work of this strategic railway line. “Once we have a concrete planning, there should be no obstacle in achieving the goal and as such the Indian Railways is well determined to face every challenge by using all modern technology in the implementation on this project.”

The Minister also assured to carry forward the project focusing on conservation of the fragile environment of the region. He said the railway line would prove a boon not only in tourism promotion but would open so many employment opportunities to the locals besides strengthening the nation’s security.

J&K’s Minister for Ladakh Affairs, Chhering Dorjey termed this development as a historic day for Ladakh, and hoped the dream of this lifeline shall become reality within the shortest possible time. The Bilaspur-Manali-Leh New Rail Line when completed would become a tourist attraction itself besides opening a new gate of development in Ladakh, he added.

LAHDC Chief Executive Councilor, Dr Sonam Dawa Lonpo on this occasion expressed gratitude to the Government of India for taking this commendable step to link this remote region with railway line which otherwise remains totally cut off with rest of the Nation for almost six months during winter. Till the Bilaspur-Leh railway line is completed, Dr. Dawa urged the Union Railway Ministry to initiate works on an internal railway circuit within Leh connecting Nimmu to Upshi along the Indus River.

Ladakh MP Thupstan Chhewang welcomed this great development in Ladakh and said that linking Ladakh with railways would tremendously boost the border security, tourism and other economic activities, besides create numerous job opportunities for the locals. The initiative would also give an opportunity for patriotic Ladakhis to further strengthen the bonds of mutual brotherhood with rest of the country, he added.

The MLA Leh, Nawang Rinzin Jora addressing on the occasion termed both the Railway Line and Zojila-Tunnel projects as very crucial for Ladakh as far as Nation’s security is concerned. He said that Ladakh is surrounded by enemy countries and linking Ladakh with these lines would reinforce the Nation’s security besides tourism and economic promotion.

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