Srinagar, June 24 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday reviewed progress on the ambitious Jammu-Baramulla rail link, an official said here.
The prime minister held his 4th monthly video conference under his Pro-active Governance and Timely Implementation (PRAGATI) initiative with union secretaries and chief secretaries of states.
“Jammu and Kashmir Chief Secretary Iqbal Khandey participated in the video conference. The prime minister, in respect of Jammu and Kashmir, reviewed the progress of Jammu-Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Rail Link Project,” an official statement said.
“He directed Railway Board chairman A.K. Mittal to remove all bottlenecks in the timely completion of the prestigious Rail Project.
“Earlier, the chairman, Railway Board informed the prime minister that 215 km of the total 326 km long Rail link project have already been completed, however, the remaining 111 km long Katra-Banihal section is still under construction and only 35 percent work of the said section is complete,” the statement said.
“He said the Katra-Banihal section passes through difficult terrain. Moreover, many PILs have been filed in different courts over the years which has caused delay in the timely completion of the project.
“He further said the construction work on this section has been undertaken through three agencies viz Northern Railway (5 km), Konkan Railway (35 km) and Ircon Railway (71 km). The work involves construction of 40 bridges (7 km) and 28 tunnels of 94 km length.”
The 54 km long Jammu-Udhampur section was commissioned in 2005 and the remaining 272 km long portion between Udhampur and Baramulla was declared as National Project.
“Till date, out of the 118 km long section of Qazigund-Baramulla, 18 km long section of Qazigund-Banihal and he 25 km long section of Udhampur-Katra have been completed.
“Under PRAGATI, the prime minister conducts meetings with union secretaries and chief secretaries on monthly basis to address common man’s grievances besides monitoring and reviewing important programmes and projects of the government of India as well as important projects of state governments,” the statement said.