World’s highest rail line to be built in India Between Manali And Leh
Indian Railways is moving fast to connect Ladakh with New Delhi through rail lines by expediting work on the strategically significant Bilaspur-Manali-Leh broad-gauge rail line. It is a 465-km railway line. The location survey of the first phase is complete. The final location survey is expected to be completed in 30 months after which a detailed project report will be finalised.
भारतीय रेल बिलासपुर से कुल्लू-मनाली होते हुए लेह तक 465 KM लंबी रेल लाइन का निर्माण करने जा रहा है, यह लाइन विश्व की सबसे ऊँची रेल लाइन होगी, जिसमे सुरंगे, पुल भी शामिल है। सामरिक दृष्टि से महत्वपूर्ण होने के साथ-साथ यह रेलवे लाइन सैलानियों के लिए भी बहुत उपयोगी होगी। pic.twitter.com/ryaLTZwthB
— Piyush Goyal Office (@PiyushGoyalOffc) October 17, 2018
The proposed Bilaspur-Manali-Leh rail line will have many firsts to its credit. At 5,360 meters above the sea level, it will be the world’s highest railway line. The 465-km line, to be built at a cost of Rs 83,360 crore, will include India’s first underground railway station in Keylong. The proposed alignment passes through the Shivaliks, Himalayas and the Zanskar range and four mountain passess – Rohtang La, Barlacha La, Lachung La and Tangla La.
The project will include 74 tunnels, 124 major bridges and 396 minor bridges, according to the first phase of the survey done for the project , 52 per cent would go through tunnels, the longest of which would be 27 km long. Total length of the tunnels would be 244 km. The only project comparable to the railway line is the Qinghai-Tibet line in China, which is at a height of around 2,000 metres above sea level.
The railways wants the strategic line, to be completed by 2022, along the Indo-China border to be declared a national project. The railways is also seeking the help of the US for satellite imagery to survey the route and will also use the Lidar method for an understanding of the geology of the entire route.
“We can start construction to showcase Indian Railway’s presence in the valley. The railway line will provide relief for locals as well as Army personnel living there,” said Alok Kumar, who is overseeing the project.
The railway has sought Central funding for 51-km stretch between Upshi and Leh. Lok Sabha MP Thupstan Chhewang also wrote to Railway minister Piyush Goyal on September 6 demanding the project to be declared as national project.
When complete, trains on Bilaspur-Manali-Leh line would run at a speed of 75 kmph. It will reduce the distance between Delhi to Leh from the present 40 hours to 20 hours.