Aizawl: Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw on Wednesday said that the Centre has halted measures for the construction of a broad-gauge railway line to connect south Mizoram’s Lawngtlai district bordering Myanmar as it is economically not viable, an official statement said.
In a written reply to lone Mizoram Lok Sabha member C. Lalrosanga, the Union Minister said that a reconnaisance engineering-cum-traffic survey had been conducted for the proposed construction of a broad gauge railway line between Sairang near Aizawl and Hmawngbuchhuah in Lawngtlai district, the statement said.
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As per the survey, the proposed broad gauge railway line is estimated to be 223 km long and the anticipated cost of the project is over Rs. 15,000 crore, the Union Minister said.
“The Rate of Return (RoR) of the proposed project is estimated to be minus (-) 10.45 per cent. Measures for the project could not proceed further because it will earn less return as compared to the anticipated project cost,” Vaishnaw was quoted as saying.
The construction of BG railway line between Sairang and Hmawngbuchhuah is one of the most anticipated projects and long-standing aspirations of the people of Mizoram.
The Northeast Frontier Railway is currently executing a 51.38 km long broad gauge railway line project between Sairang and Bairabi on the Mizoram-Asam border at an estimated cost of Rs. 6,527 crore.
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According to officials, there will be 55 major, 87 minor bridges and 32 tunnels measuring about 12.65 km in the entire project.
The construction of the broad-gauge railway line began in 2015 and is scheduled to be completed by March 2023, they said.