Union Minister of Railways Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu, on Monday flagged off a new Shatabdi Express between Naharlagun and Guwahati by remote through video link from N. F. Railway headquarters at Maligaon. The newly flagged off Shatabdi Express train will provide a speedier and comfortable connectivity between the capital cities of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.
This superfast fully air-conditioned train will cover the distance in six hours. It will start from Naharlagun at 05-00 am to arrive Guwahati at 11-00 am every Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday. From Guwahati it will leave at 03-20 pm to arrive Naharlagun at 09-20 pm every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. This new train is expected to fulfil a long standing of the people of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.
Flagging off the new train, the Railway Minister said that Indian Railways has accelerated its developmental work and in the last three years alone had invested close to Rs. 3.5 lak crore for various projects in the country for capacity enhancement. He also said that currently projects worth about RS. 90,000 crore are being executed in the northeast region.
Prabhu said, Indian Railway is committed for not only providing better connectivity but also better passenger experience. He said, Indian Railway will launch a new Application for mobile platform to address passenger grievances very soon.
Calling the occasion as historic for Arunachal, Chief Minister Pema Khandu said the railway connectivity would open new vistas for economic development in the state. He hoped that the connectivity would boost tourism, increase agriculture and horticulture activities, and support other developmental activities such as hydropower, etc.
Saying that Arunachal is poised for growth in coming days, the Chief Minister appealed the people to cooperate with the government and take responsibility of their own development as team Arunachal.
Khandu said the Prime Minister is very much concerned on development of Arunachal and one could see development activities taking place along that line. He said the people of Arunachal should be grateful to the PM for the kind of development ambition he has chalked out for the state.
“To plan for railway connectivity in tough terrains of Arunachal itself shows great leadership quality of the PM and the concern he has for the state,” he pointed.
Stressing that connectivity is a major issue for Arunachal Khandu said that under Narendra Modi’s leadership, the highway ministry has announced Rs 50000 crores to connect missing links in the state.
He asserted the six ALGs and civilian airports would be made functional soon.
Khandu assured that once the surveys are completed and the seven railway lines become functional, all foothill places of the state will be interconnected.
Prabhu also laid the foundation stone for construction of a 26-km-long new broad gauge railway line from Murkongselek in Assam to Pasighat in Arunachal Pradesh and announced commencement of surveys for 07 (seven) new broad gauge railway lines in Arunachal Pradesh.
These surveys are in addition to the surveys already announced for strategic lines connecting Tawang, Along and Parsuramkund, and are targeted for completion by December 2018. The seven surveys are:
|SN||Name Of Survey||Approx. Length|
|1||Lekhapani- Kharsang||25 KM|
|2||Itakhola to Seijosa||18 KM|
|3||Doodooma to Wakro via Simulguri,Namsai, Chowkham||96 KM|
|4||Dangri to Roing||60 KM|
|5||Naharkatia- Deomali||20 KM|
|6||Lekhapani – Napnong-New khamlang-Deben||75 KM|
|7||Tinsukia (Longpotia) (Assam) To Pasighat Via Kanubari, Deomali, Lekhapani, Jairampur, Kharsang, Miao, Diyun, Tezu, Bhismaknagar, Roing, Dambuk||300 KM|
|Total survey length||594 km|
Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh Pema Khandu, Railway Minister of State Rajen Gohain, Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju were among the dignitaries present at Naharlagun railway station.