Pandemic derails four rail projects in Punjab - ECAS Punjab

Pandemic derails four rail projects in Punjab

Share This

Ravi Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service
Gurdaspur/Pathankot, Aug 28

Covid has derailed four major rail projects in the border area. The ventures include 40-km Beas-Qadian track, elevation of the 3.6-km stretch of narrow gauge track within the municipal limits of Pathankot city, establishment of an underpass on the Gurdaspur-Tibri road level-crossing and a rail overbridge on the Sujanpur-Pathankot track.

The ventures

  • 40-km Beas-Qadian track
  • Elevation of the 3.6-km stretch of narrow gauge track within the municipal limits of Pathankot city
  • Establishment of an underpass on the Gurdaspur-Tibri road level-crossing
  • A rail overbridge on the Sujanpur-Pathankot track

Sources said the projects might get delayed as the "Covid-induced fear would stay for at least two years".

There are as many as seven level-crossings in Pathankot city and all of these are closed a dozen times a day when the Joginder Nagar-Pathankot toy train passes.

This has not only brought the economic development of the city to a standstill, but also put residents under unending misery. The project cost is Rs 280 crore project, with the Union and state governments supposed to chip in equal amount. The Qadian-Beas link has also hit a roadblock.

In 2011, then MP Partap Singh Bajwa had urged Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee to include the construction of the track in the rail budget under the "Socially Desirable Rail Connectivity Proposals (SDRCP)" bracket. The minister had obliged and an amount of Rs 205 crore was set aside. However, when the land acquisition started, some Akali leaders played a spoilsport for their own political gains. Ever since the project has been in a limbo.

MP Sunny Deol said some BJP leaders tried to infuse oxygen in the venture before the virus struck. Qadian MLA Fateh Jung Singh Bajwa, who has written numerous letters to the the ministry and CM Capt Amarinder Singh, asked Deol to stop politicising the issue.

"Deol was not even into politics when my brother Partap Bajwa managed to convince the Railway Minister about the viability of the project. Now the actor, by simply applying finishing touches, is trying to hijack the venture, which everybody knows is our brainchild," said a livid Fateh Bajwa.



from The Tribune https://ift.tt/3gFqUsq

No comments:

Post a Comment

Pages