Indian Railway’s largest Qazigund-Banihal Tunnel that will link Kashmir to rest of India to be com




Srinagar, August 24 (Vijay Kumar) – J&K Governor, N. N. Vohra, on Monday inspected Qazigund Railway Station and took stock of the amenities being put in place for the passengers.

The Governor also paid a visit to the Railway Tunnel site at Lower Munda in south Kashmir and took stock of the pace of work on the construction of this 11 km long Pir Panjal Railway tunnel connecting Qazigund with Banihal. The Chief Engineer apprised the Governor that out of the 11 km long tunnel, the work on eight km-four and a half km from Banihal side and three and a half km from Qazigund side-has been completed so far while the entire tunnel is scheduled to be completed by December 2010. He said that thereafter the process for laying of track will commence.


It may mentioned here that the tunnel from Banihal to Qazigund on the Udhampur-Srinagar line is going be Indian Railways’ largest, and the second largest in Asia after the recently completed, 20-km Wushaoling tunnel in Gansu, northwest China. The longest operational rail tunnel in India is the 6.5-km Karbude on the Konkan railways. A team of about 500 has been working under the mountains round the clock and aims to finish the tunnel by December 2010.



The Governor went round the hi-tech ASM-cum-Panel Room and Solid State Interlocking Room. The Governor was briefed about the entire site plan of the Railway Station with details of the facilities, by the senior Railway Officers.The Chief Engineer, Construction, North-East, Northern Railway, Chahatey Ram, while briefing the Governor, said that the latest technology has been introduced at Qazigund Railway Station to facilitate quick train movements.The Chief Engineer stated that the Commissioner of Railway Safety has given clearance for operating DMU on 19 km Qazigund-Anantnag stretch of the Qazigund-Srinagar-Baramulla Rail Link Project.

                       Later, the Governor visited famous tourist spot of Verinag. In discussion with the local officers, he emphasized the need for further upgrading the facilities at this resort as a large number of tourists and locals visit this place. He also asked for cleaning up of the historic Verinag spring and fixing glass frames on the two stone plaques on which the history of this spring is inscribed, which is the source of Jhelum river. He also called for better upkeep of the garden and other infrastructure at Verinag.  

            A deputation of locals met the Governor and submitted a memorandum to him urging the upgradation of the tourist infrastructure at Verinag. He assured that he would take up the matter with the Government.

            The Governor also visited Trout Fish Farming Project at Kokernag and went round the fish rearing ponds and hatchery house.

            The Director Fisheries, . T. Angchook briefed the Governor that Rainbow and Brown Trout fish is produced, reared and propagated at this farm, which was set up in 1984 over an area of 350 kanals of land. The farm also has 32 subsidiary units across the State for which the fish seed and finger-lings are supplied from this farm. Two fish rearing systems-European and American-besides local type, are being adopted for producing, rearing and propagating fish at this farm.


The First Lady, Mrs. Usha Vohra, Principal Secretary to the Governor, Raj Kumar Goyal, DIG, South Kashmir Range, Dr. Kamal Saini, SSP Anantnag,. Showkat Malik and other senior officers accompanied the Governor during the visit.