Union Minister of State for External Affairs and Education RK Ranjan on Thursday announced that the government is targeting to make railways reach Imphal this year.
Ranjan was speaking to the media on the sidelines of an event held to celebrate a breakthrough achieved by Northern Frontier Railway (Construction) after successfully completing excavation work of the safety tunnel of main tunnel-12.
The parallel tunnels, one main and one safety, are located at Saheibung village in Kangpokpi district along the Jiribam-Imphal railway line.
The total length of the safety tunnel is 8.3 km. Safety tunnel is a safety requirement to be used for evacuation of the passengers in case of any emergency in the main tunnel.
This breakthrough will assist in easy access to the work sites for completing the remaining portion of the tunnel.
The main Tunnel-12 has a total length of 10.275 km and this is the longest Tunnel of NF Railway.
This tunnel is connecting hills to the Imphal valley and is most critical for completion of the Tupul-Imphal section. Of the main tunnel, a length of 7.742 km has been completed so far and work progress is above 70 per cent, according to NF Railway officials.
Pointing out that the goods train had reached Khongsang station, Ranjan appealed to businessmen to switch to railways as means of transporting goods and commodities from Guwahati to Khongsang and use trucks to transport the same to Imphal.
Ranjan further said that the survey work and technical feasibility of Imphal-Moreh rail line have also been completed. “The completion of this project will facilitate Act East Policy,” he added.
The minister distributed sweets to the railway construction workers and engineers to mark the celebration.