Good roads, railways vital for J&K;: Omar Abdullah

September 10th, 2012 - 10:52 pm ICT by IANS  

Jammu, Sep 10 (IANS) Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah Monday underlined the importance of good road and rail connectivity for “socio-economic development of the state”.

Inspecting the widening of the 300-km Jammu-Srinagar National Highway to four lanes and the railway link between the two cities, the chief minister highlighted the importance of both the projects.

He said: “This railway project and four-laning of National Highway from Lakhanpur to Srinagar are the prestigious projects cherished by the people for a long time.”

“Up to the mark road communication in a state like Jammu and Kashmir is all the more important because of its geographical diversity, hilly terrain and remoteness,” Abdullah added.

He said the rail communication will “provide alternate and all weather commuting facility for people and trans-shipment of goods including fruit and vegetables from the state. This would be of significant economic importance to the Valley”.

He said both the projects of four-laning of the National Highway and Railway link between Jammu and Srinagar would help in generation of wide-ranging economic activities for the people in the state and generate much needed employment avenues.

The chief minister inspected the Pir Panchal Railway Tunnel (T-80) connecting Jammu to Kashmir Valley through the Pir Panchal mountain range of the Himalayas. The 11-km long Pir Panchal Tunnel is the longest rail tunnel in India located between Banihal in the south (in Jammu region) and Qazigund in the north (in Kashmir valley).

Railway authorities told the chief minister that the Jammu-Srinagar-Baramulla Railway project of Indian Railways has been declared a national project and it envisages construction of large number of tunnels and bridges to be implemented in highly rugged and mountainous terrains with utmost difficulty.

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