Indian Railways plans a direct train to Leh from Delhi through the world’s highest railway line. Yes, you read that correct! This would be the highest rail route in the world and will run along the India-China border. With this, it will add another Gem in India’s crown. Indian Railways is planning to build a strategically-important Bilaspur-Manali- Leh line along the Indo-China border.
According to the reports, the location survey of the first phase is complete. The final location survey is already on for the finer details, which would be complete in 24 months’ time. Once, the final survey is done a detailed project report will be finalized. In the meantime let’s find out more about this hugely amazing project – A Direct Train to Leh from Delhi to fancy a ride on this adventurous route.
Recommended Read: 10 Amazing Things in India – Worth Experiencing Once in a Lifetime !!!
A Direct Train to Leh from Delhi- Key Attractions of the Mammoth Project:
Cost of the Project:
The cost of this strategic railway line will be INR 83,360.00 Crores
This direct train to Leh from Delhi will take a mere 20 hours. Currently, the travel time to Leh from Delhi via train is 40 hours.
Tunnels & Bridges:
The world’s highest railway route will include 74 tunnels, 124 major bridges, and 396 minor bridges. The longest tunnel would be 27 km long. And, the total length of all the 74 tunnels would be 244 km. This is what the report of the first phase of the survey says. More than half of the route would be traversed through tunnels.
Number of Stations:
There will be 30 stations on this route. The direct train to Leh from Delhi will traverse through some of the most important and major places between Bilaspur and Leh. To name a few, this route will include Sundernagar, Mandi, Manali, Keylong, Koksar, Darcha, Upshi, and Karu. These are the important cities of Himachal Pradesh & Jammu and Kashmir.
Keylong station will be the first in India of its kind. This station will be built inside a tunnel at a height of 3,000 metres.
Height Above the Sea Level:
As per the proposal, the rail line will have the highest road point of 5,360 metres above mean sea level. Currently, the Qinghai-Tibet Railway Line in China has got this crown, which is at a height of around 2,000 metres above mean sea level.
Benefits of World’s Highest Rail Route:
- The Leh Ladakh and Himachal region always get a heavy snowfall, resulting in connectivity issue by road and air. With this rail route, Indian Armed Forces will have quick all-weather access.
- The railway line will boost tourism in the scenic Leh Ladakh region by providing direct connectivity in a shorter time span as compared to the current modes of travel i.e. by road and air.
Snippets of the Journey – A Direct Train to Leh from Delhi:
As per Mr. Alok Kumar, Chief Administrative Office of Northern Railway, this proposed project is one of the most difficult projects for IRCTC to date. The imposing mountains on the route as well as the formidable challenges the construction process will have to bear with.
Images used in the article are representational, as the project is still in the pipeline.