Sarkaritel.com News and
'Northeastern capitals on rail map by 2017'
Agartala, 04 July, 2011
The Indian Railways will connect all the
capitals of northeastern states with the rest of the country
by 2017, a senior railway official said.
"Under the current mandate of 'North East Vision 2020' all the
northeastern state capitals would be brought under railway
connectivity by 2017 if the land acquisition takes place on
time," Northeast Frontier Railways (NFR) General Manager
(Construction), Vijaya Kanth told reporters.
The North East Vision 2020 was prepared by the North Eastern
Council (NEC) for the development of the region. The eight
northeastern states are Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya,
Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura and Sikkim.
Several railway projects now under
way in all the eight northeastern states are getting delayed.
The main cause is a long period of monsoon which leaves a very
short working period from October to March, she said.
"Frequent shutdowns by various political and non-political
parties have affected railway construction works and traffic
as well as supply of essential goods between the northeastern
states and the rest of India," the official said.
"Due to mountainous locations and terrorism in some parts of
the region, technical and security related challenges are also
major obstacles for expansion of railway network in the
region, bordering China, Bangladesh, Myanmar and Bhutan," said
The NFR is now laying railway tracks to extend its network up
to Sabroom in southern Tripura, 135 km from Agartala, the NFR
general manager said.
"After the extension of railway line up to Indian border town
Sabroom, it would be easier to access the Chittagong
international sea port," Vijaya Kanth stated.
She said that northeast is NFR's priority area and receives
government's full support.
"Works are now in full swing to extend railway line from
Agartala to border town Sabroom by 2014 and to connect south
Tripura's district town Udaipur by March 2012," said the
"In the eastern border state of Arunachal Pradesh, capital
Itanagar would be connected to Harmuti while the Himalayan
state of Sikkim too would not lag behind. Tracks would be laid
from Sevoke in neighbouring West Bengal to Rangpo in south
Sikkim," she said.
Assam's main city Guwahati and Tripura capital Agartala are
now already connected by the railway network.
Agartala is the newest station of the railways and came up on
the country's rail map in October 2008.
Railway line first entered Assam in 1881 when the Assam
Railway and trading companies began construction of a 65-km
long metre gauge line from Dibrugargh to Makum collieries in
Margherita in northeastern Assam for the sole purpose of
transporting tea and coal.
In all, ten rail projects in the northeastern region have been
declared as 'national projects.' Important projects include
Bogibeel rail-cum-road bridge in Assam and gauge conversion
between southern Assam and Tripura.
The NFR construction chief along with senior railway officials
is now on a visit to Tripura to supervise the railway work
According to the official, in Nagaland tracks exist up to
Dimapur. It would be further extended to capital Kohima. In
Manipur, tracks will be extended from Jiribam to capital