Nagpur/New Delhi: The works for third rail line between Nagpur to Rajnandgaon will commence soon as Prime MInister Narendra Modi-led Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved the construction of 228.3 km rail route on Wednesday. The work which is expected to be completed in five years has been approved at the estimated cost of Rs 2,200 cr. Including this project, the CCEA has approved infrastructure projects worth Rs.27,328 crore for expansion of railway lines in 11 states and development of 1,120 km national highways in five states.
South East Central Railway (SECR) divisional railway manager (DRM) Amit Agrawal told a national daily, “We had sent a proposal only this year. It was one of the most crucial projects identified by railway minister Suresh Prabhu to enhance line capacity which has overrun,”
Besides facilitating passengers, various industries, mines, coal fields and power plants will have additional transport capacity to meet their requirement. Rajnandgaon district of Chhattisgarh and Gondia, Bhandara, Tumsar and Tiroda in Maharashtra will be major beneficiaries.
Rajnandgaon-Nagpur line forms part of Howrah-Mumbai trunk route serving freight and passenger traffic from eastern and southern regions to northern and western regions and vice versa over the country.
The third line between Rajnandgaon-Nagpur was a long pending demand on account of accelerated industrial and mining developments in the region and coal traffic from Chhattisgarh. “The third line would help channelize both freight and passenger traffic to their respective destinations,” Agrawal said.
The Nagpur-Rajnandgaon project is among nine projects worth Rs24,374.86 crore in nine states to give a boost to infrastructure sector in the country.
Earlier, on February 15, the CCEA had announced third line between 132-km-long Sevagram-Ballarshah and is to be completed in five years. A third line has also been announced between Itarsi and Nagpur and fourth line between Nagpur-Wardha but none of these projects have seen light of the day.
The government plans to increase its investments in the infrastructure sector. About 8,300 kilometres of roads involving more than Rs.1 lakh crore investments were revived, said Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in his Budget speech. Total investments earmarked in the current fiscal for roads and railways sectors amounts to Rs.2.18 lakh crore. The Centre is also augmenting port capacity by developing greenfield projects in both eastern and western coasts. In the aviation sector, the Centre plans to revive torpid airports.
The railway expansion programme includes nine projects involving 1,937 km of track construction at an estimated cost of Rs.20,867 crore. The projects include construction of second railway line between New Bongaigaon and Kamakhya in Assam. The government also gave its approval to build third and fourth railway line projects on the North South and East West Corridors of the Golden Quadrilateral.