Indian Railways has commenced final location survey for railway line connecting Bilaspur to Leh. If completed, this 498 km long line would be the world’s highest railway line.
Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu has inaugurated the final location survey and work on the railway line connecting Bilaspur to Leh has already started. This project will facilitate train travel to Leh, Ladakh and neighbouring destinations. Funded by the Defence Ministry, budget for the survey has been estimated at Rs. 155.77 Crores.
The 498 kms long railway line will connect Bilaspur, Manali, Tandi, Leh, Sunder Nagar, Keylong, Upshi, Karu, Koksar and Darcha. It will be built at a height of 3300 metres. Once completed, the Bilaspur-Manali-Leh railway line would be the highest in the world. Currently, China Qinghai-Tibet Railway is the highest railway line in the world.
A railway PSU, with the name of RITES, has been assigned the task of final location survey. RITES stands for ‘Rail India Technical and Economic Service’ and specialises in the field of transport infrastructure. Exact cost of construction of the railway line is estimated to be upwards of Rs. 30,000 crores but concrete details would emerge by 2019 once the final location survey is completed.
The fact that roads to Leh are usable for 5 months in a year hinders tourist attraction and, consequently, general development in this area. Completion of the railway line will be of great importance for the region. It will improve tourism industry in remote areas and make travel to remote areas quicker and convenient. Travellers who use their cars to drive to high altitude areas face certain difficulties due to the difficult terrain and limited capabilities of their vehicles. Train travel will undoubtedly make beautiful areas like Leh accessible to more and more tourists throughout the year.
Train To Leh, Ladakh
– Indian Railways starts location survey for Bilaspur-Manali-Leh line
– Built at an altitude of 3300 metres, survey to be completed by 2019
– The 498 km long line connects Leh, Manali, Bilaspur, Tandi and other destinations
– Budget for survey is estimated at Rs. 157.77 Crores