Uttar Pradesh gets major railway connectivity boost! Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led Cabinet today approved the 240-km long railway line from Bahraich to Khalilabad. The big Indian Railways project will be developed at a cost of Rs 4,939.78 crore. The railway line from Bahraich to Khalilabad, which will be fully electrified will pass through Balrampur and Sarawasti. It is likely to be completed by 2024-25 and will lie in the North Eastern Zonal Railway. Interestingly, four districts, which fall under this project- Bahraich, Balrampur, Siddharth Nagar and Shravasti - are among the 115 aspirational districts that have been identified by NITI Aayog to grow small-scale industries. According to sources quoted in a TOI report, the demand for this railway line, connecting Bahraich to Khalilabad had been pending for decades. The new Indian Railways line will boost the pilgrimage-related tourism in the region as it will provide connectivity to three crucial temples including a Jain and a Buddhist place of worship in this eastern part of Uttar Pradesh. The line will pass through the district Shravasti (Bhinga), an important tourist place which is closely associated with the life of Gautam Buddha and Shravasti, a crucial centre for Jains as the Sobhanath temple is said to be the birthplace of the Tirthankara Sambhavanath. According to officials, the railway line project would be fast tracked and it would be constructed within the time line. The big infrastructure project would also push employment opportunities when the long railway line will be built. The decision to set up the railway line is also being seen as a big gift to the state as Uttar Pradesh elects maximum number of MPs to the Lok Sabha. Meanwhile, PM Modi-chaired Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, last month, approved the proposal for electrification of balance un-electrified BG routes of Indian Railways network, which comprises 108 sections covering 13,675 route kms (16,540 track kms). According to the Railway Ministry, this would be done at a cost of Rs 12,134.50 crore. The ministry also informed that the entire electrification process is likely to be completed by 2021-22.