Indian Railways took another step towards connecting the North East with the rest of India through a good railway network on Saturday – by laying the foundation for Imphal station and announcing commencement of work on the country’s longest rail tunnel as well as world’s tallest girder rail bridge.
The tunnel will be built on the Jiribam-Tupul-Imphal new broad gauge railway line in Manipur. The 111-km long line already has 37 tunnels on it.
The new tunnel will be 11.55 km long, more than the famous Pir Panjal tunnel on the Banihal-Qazigund line.
Another striking feature on the stretch will be the construction of the world’s tallest girder rail bridge over Iring river. The bridge, with a pier height of 141 metres, will be almost equal to two Qutub Minars stacked on top of each other.
Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu made these announcements on Saturday while speaking at the foundation laying ceremony for the new railway station in Imphal.
“Connectivity is the prime driver of development and the Railway Ministry would not spare any resources for bringing in speedy development of rail connectivity in the region. Indian Railways have taken a holistic approach towards development and the 111-km-long new broad gauge railway line from Jiribam to Imphal. This will not only connect Imphal to the rest of the country but also open up new vistas for economic development of the region,” he said.