Srinagar: Principal Secretary, Industries and Commerce Ranjan Prakash Thakur reviewed the progress of the Katra-Banihal section of the Railways and inspected the Railway’s Chenab Bridge in Reasi district along with Chief Administrative Officer USBRL, A K Khandelwal on Thursday.
Thakur carried out an intensive inspection of the Chenab Bridge site and appreciated the progress of the Katra-Banihal section as well as Chenab Bridge.
The USBRL Project, which is a national project, would connect Kashmir with the rest of the country through an all-weather railway network.
The total length of the USBRL is 272 km of which 161 km has already been commissioned, while work is in progress on the 111-km long Katra-Banihal stretch.
The Katra-Banihal section comprises 27 main tunnels and eight escape tunnels and 87 percent out of the 111-km section is covered in tunnels.
During the inspection it was informed that more than 200 km of approach roads, including a tunnel and 320 bridges, had been constructed to reach the working sites, the official said.
He said that the 161-km long railway line from Banihal to Baramulla had already been commissioned, and its electrification work was in progress.
The official said that it was expected to be completed by March 2022.
Chenab Bridge, the highest railway bridge in the world, which is 1.315 km long and has a maximum arch span of 480 metres is part of the project.
More than 29,000 metric tonnes of steel are being used in the construction of the bridge.
The entire erection of structural components in Kashmir has been carried out using two cable cranes of 20 metric tonnes capacity each and 35 metric tonnes in tandem having a span of 915 metres across the valley.
Upon completion of the Katra-Banihal section, Kashmir would be connected through a railway network, which would improve the economic opportunities for the entire Kashmir population.