India-led prelim study for Valley-Raxaul rail begins

India-led prelim study for Valley-Raxaul rail begins

Jun 10, 2018-A technical team from India has started initial study for construction of Kathmandu-Raxaul railway line. The team, which zeroed in on Chobhar on Friday to set up the railway station in Kathmandu, has reached Birgunj for formal commencement of the study.

According to the Railways Department, six technical officers from India are involved in the study which does not have a time limit. According to department Spokesperson Prakash Bhakta Upadhyaya, the team will be looking out for a location in Raxaul for the construction of the railway station. “Chobhar will be the end point of the Kathmandu-Raxaul railway line. The team will approach towards Kathmandu from Birgunj gradually,” said Upadhyaya. The team would conduct an extensive study before coming up with a report.

During the state visit of Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli to India in the first week of April, there had been an agreement to extend railway connectivity to Kathmandu via Raxaul of India.

Prime Minister Modi had said that India would bear the cost of building the Kathmandu-Raxaul electric railway line.

The two sides had also agreed to carry out preparatory survey within a year. The railway line is estimated to be 113 km long. “The precise length and technical details will come out as the study progresses,” Upadhyaya said.

Birgunj already has a railway line connecting Raxaul but it is used only for shipping cargo from Kolkata to the dry port in Sirsiya.

The deal translates into action as PM Oli is set to embark on a state visit to China, which has already begun pre-feasibility study for building the Kathmandu-Kerung railway line. A technical team from China recently conducted a survey and is set to submit it report to Nepal by August. According to officials, the project will figure in bilateral engagements in Beijing during the PM’s visit.



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