Soon, Kashmir to be connected by Indian Railways to the rest of India! By December 2021, Kashmir will be connected to the rest of the country through the Indian Railways network as the government has set a new deadline for completion of the world’s highest railway bridge – Chenab bridge. The Chenab railway bridge will be 35 metres taller than the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France! According to Konkan Railways, it is the most challenging project in the post-independent history of the national transporter. Konkan Railway Chairman Sanjay Gupta was quoted in a PTI report saying that the world’s highest railway bridge, connecting Kashmir with the rest of India through a rail line will be completed by December next year.
According to Gupta, the construction of the bridge is the most challenging task of the Kashmir railway link project, undertaken in the 150-year-long history of Indian Railways. However, once completed, it will be an engineering marvel, the Konkan Railway Chairman further said. While elaborating on the project, Gupta informed that being constructed in hostile terrain, the massive arch-shaped structure has used over 5,462 tonnes of steel and will be 359 metres above the river bed. The bridge has been designed to withstand wind speeds of up to 260 kmph. The 1.315 km long “engineering marvel” will link Bakkal in Katra and Kauri in Srinagar.
The Chenab bridge forms an important link in the 111 km long stretch between Katra and Banihal, which is a part of Indian Railways’ Udhampur- Srinagar-Baramulla rail link project. Once the development work of the bridge is completed, it will surpass the record of China’s Beipan river Shuibai railway bridge (275 m).
According to Gupta, the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla rail link project is important to offer an alternative as well as a reliable transportation system to the state of Jammu and Kashmir to join Kashmir Valley to the network of Indian Railways. Considering the importance of this project in providing hassle-free and seamless connectivity in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, the project was declared as a national project in the year 2002, he added.