The government today approved construction of a tunnel at Z-Morh in Jammu & Kashmir at a cost of Rs 2,717 crore to provide all weather connectivity between Srinagar and Leh.
The decision to give nod to 6.5 km long tunnel was taken by the Cabinet Committee on Infrastructure (CCI) at its meeting here. The tunnel will be built on build,operate and transfer (annuity) basis.
Ladakh at present remains cut off from the mainland for six to seven months during winter due to heavy snow fall on Jammu-Srinagar-Zozila-Kargil-Leh and Manali-Sarchu-Leh routes that connect Leh to the mainland.
“The CCI today approved the implementation of the construction of the 6.50 kms long two lane bi-directional tunnel on a new alignment in between Gagangir and Sonamarg,along the existing NH-1 at Z- Morh… for all weather connectivity from Srinagar to Leh on NH-1 (old NH -1D) in Jammu and Kashmir,” an official statement said.
The stretch between Srinagar and Leh would not only be important for the strategic interests of the Indian Army,but also for the survival of people of Ladakh and their socio-economic development,the statement said.
“The total capital cost of the project will Rs 2,716.90 crore,out of which approximately,Rs 36.48 crore will be for land acquisition,rehabilitation,resettlement and pre-construction,” the statement added.
The project is aimed at improving infrastructure in the state,the statement said.
It will also increase the employment potential for local labourers and boost the industrial growth and economic activities,with better commuting facilities in villages,towns and semi-urban and urban areas,it added.
Earlier Public Private Partnership Appraisal Committee in its meeting in July had given its nod to the project.