NEW DELHI: To augment power generation in the country, Union Railway Minister D V Sadananda Gowda announced the speeding up of construction of three crucial rail lines in Jharkhand, Odisha and Chhattisgarh that will create inter-state rail corridors for faster transportation of coal.
In his budget speech for 2014-15, Gowda said the critical Tori-Shivpur-Kathautia rail line in Jharkhand, which is approximately 98 km long will be expedited. It will help in transporting coal from mines being operated by the state owned Coal India Limited.
Another project, the Jharsuguda-Barpalli-Sardega railway line in Odisha is approximately 53-km long and will connect the Coal India Mine with the rail network. The third critical rail line is the 180-km long Bhupdevpuir-Korichapan-Dharamjaigarh will connect Mand-Raigarh Coalfields with rail network in Chhattisgarh.
“This will bring nearly 100 million tonnes of incremental traffic to the Railways and will facilitate faster transportation of coal to power houses,” Gowda said.
All three projects were stalled due to the Naxal menace, slow progress in land acquisition and forest clearance at the state level. The Jharkhand project was first cleared in the year 2000. Last month, MoS (Ind) of Coal and Power, Piyush Goyal had a meeting with Rail Minister seeking his help in completing the three critical rail lines.