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Giving a big push to the infrastructure sector in the country, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, today approved nine projects worth about Rs 24,000 crore in nine states for expansion of railway network and connectivity across the country.
The CCEA chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi have given green signal the massive line expansion programme that involves track construction of a total length of 1937.38 km at an estimated cost of Rs 24,374.86 crore, said a release.
The nine projects include the 176 km long construction of second railway line between New Bongaigaon and Kamakhya, the 132 km long third line between Kharagpur (Nimpura) and Adityapur (Jharkhand) and 228.3 km long construction of the third line between Rajnandgaon and Nagpur in Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra.
Construction of 273.80 km long third line between Mathura and Jhansi and 152.57 km long third line between Jhansi and Bina, the 280 km long third line between Itarsi and Nagpur, the 201.04 km long third line between Ballarshah and Kazipet was approved by CCEA.
Construction of 3rd line between Vijaywada and Gudur, 287.68 km long third line between Vijaywada and Gudur and the 206 km long construction of fourth line between Jharsuguda and Bilaspur was also approved by the CCEA. Besides facilitating the travel by easing the traffic bottlenecks, the approved lines would help the upcoming industries in the region and additional transport capacity to meet their requirements.
The goods trains supplying foodgrains from one region to another, various industries, mines, coal fields and power plants will have additional transport capacity through these lines resulting in more revenues to the Railways. The move is aimed at creating a capacity to carry 1.5 billion tonne of goods by 2020.
It is a huge capacity augmentation programme aimed at decongesting the main trunk routes for faster movement of coal, minerals, steel and other commodities and introduction of more mail and express trains, said a senior Railway Ministry official.
Third line/Fourth line projects approved are on North South and East West corridors on Golden Quadrangle which is fully saturated. These lines play an important role in transportation of freight and passenger traffic from Eastern and Southern regions to Northern and Western regions and vice versa. At present number of passenger and goods trains in this section are far more than its capacity, resulting in heavy detention to trains.
The nine projects include seven 3rd line, one 4th line and one doubling. These projects are essentially required for removing capacity constraints, reducing detention and to cater for traffic growth in future.