Govt to build first multi-modal railroad corridor in Northeast

The government has planned to construct the first integrated multi-modal rail and road transport corridor in the Northeast region.

As a part of the project, two road tube tunnels and one rail tube tunnel of 10 km will be developed under the Brahmaputra river.

A railroad infrastructure will be built for the railroad missing links, including new rail lines, a loop line, a railway station, and a station yard. This corridor will help military vehicles, logistics ammunition, and armed forces reach the China border of North Assam, Tawang, and Arunachal Pradesh faster.

Indian Railways, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH), and Ministry of Defense will jointly complete the project at around Rs 7,700 crore.

In May, the Border Roads Organization (BRO) presented the project to the Railway Board.

A 121.33 km long new railway line will be laid between Rangpara and Tawang to connect Tawang, Senga, Rupa, Bhalukpong and Rangpara. Another line will be laid between Dhalaibil-Jakhlabandh and Dekragaon-Jamugurihar. A new railway station will be built between Dhalaibil and Jamugurihar with more platforms, a loop line and a station yard.

An official said there are plans to lay an additional rail line between South Portal and Silghat. Commuters cannot reach the north and south banks of the Brahmaputra river due to the missing link of the railroad in the Northeast region.

The line will have Dekargaon-Tezpur-Silghati road connectivity but no rail connectivity at all. However, the Dhalaibil-Jakhlabandh link does not have rail or road connectivity. The connectivity will be strengthened by the railroad corridor on the missing link.

National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (NHIDCL) had previously proposed a plan to build a tunnel under the river. The government has changed it into a mega-integrated multi-modal rail and road transporter corridor.

The Ministry of Railways will spend Rs 2,295 crore, and MoRTH will spend over 4,700 crore, including the construction cost of three tunnels, new railway lines, electrification, station construction, and land acquisition. Besides, Rs 700 crore will be spent on additional work and other projects for the missing link.

CEO and Chairman of Railway Board, V K Tripathi, said that Railways had approved the proposal of BAO.

The rail tube tunnel will be a single-track tunnel. The middle road tube tunnel will be two-laned and can be an emergency tunnel. The road tube tunnel will have two lanes to carry traffic.

Nodal officer of MoRTH, ADG SK Nirmal, will soon visit the Northeast region with the team. The Ministry will appoint a consultant to prepare the feasibility and detailed project report (DPR).

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Also read: India plans country’s first underwater road-cum-rail tunnels in Assam

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