India’s Pandit Nehru Bridge Makes Historic Progress for Railway Network Integration

The Chenab Bridge, which is set to become the world’s highest single-arch bridge, is reaching the final stages of its construction and is poised to play a crucial role in India’s railway network. Shared by the Ministry of Railways on the social media platform X (formerly Twitter), a video showcased the inaugural trail run between Sangaldan and Reasi, highlighting the significant progress made on this landmark project.

Commissioner of Railways Safety Inspection to be Conducted: The 46-kilometer stretch between Sangaldan and Reasi is currently under scrutiny, with the Commissioner of Railways Safety (CRS) D C Deshwal scheduled to inspect the section on June 27 and 28. Deepak Kumar, the Chief Public Relations Officer of Northern Railway, confirmed that all necessary preparations are on track for the CRS inspection, signaling the project’s readiness to move forward.

Completion Update: Announced by Union Minister Dr. Jitendra Singh on X: A significant announcement came from Union Minister Dr. Jitendra Singh on X, stating that train services from Ramban to Reasi via the world’s highest railway bridge on the Chenab River would commence soon. Dr. Singh further added that the entire Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Rail Link (USBRL) project is expected to be completed by the end of this year.

About the Chenab Bridge: Cost and Objectives: The Chenab Bridge, built at an estimated cost of Rs 140 billion, is a critical component of the ambitious Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Railway Link (USBRL) project, which has an overall budget of Rs 350 billion. The USBRL project aims to enhance connectivity in the challenging geography and weather conditions of the Jammu and Kashmir region.

Overcoming Monumental Challenges: Undertaking this monumental project involved constructing 63 kilometers of tunnels and 7.5 kilometers of bridges in the unparalleled geological conditions of the Himalayas. The location of the Chenab Bridge, spanning the deep gorge of the Chenab River near the Salal Hydro Power Dam, presented the most difficult segment of the project.

Features of the Chenab Rail Bridge: The Chenab Rail Bridge stands out with its broad span single-arch design, complemented by approach viaducts on either side. It utilizes large steel trusses, with the arch comprised of two ribs. To enhance durability and reduce maintenance requirements, the truss chords have been filled with concrete, eliminating the need for interior painting.

Opening Date and Improved Regional Connectivity: Although the exact opening date remains unconfirmed, railway sources suggest that the inaugural train between Sangandlan and Reasi is likely to commence operations on June 30. Once operational, the train service from Ramban to Reasi will traverse the Chenab Bridge, further boosting the integration of existing routes from Baramulla to Sangandlan and from Kanyakumari to Katra. This will significantly enhance connectivity in the region. As the completion of the Chenab Bridge draws closer, India’s railway network awaits the immense benefits this engineering marvel will bring. With improved connectivity and enhanced transportation options, the Chenab Bridge is set to play a vital role in promoting economic growth and connecting communities in the breathtaking landscapes of Jammu and Kashmir.

Aayush Kukreja Apart from being a literature student and a theatre practitioner, Aayush is a daydreamer! He loves poetry and just as a poet should be, he’s witty, opinionated and completely clueless about life. Reach out to him anytime for some good old sher-o-shayari. Here, he writes about the quirkiest and the most interesting of things. To the rhythm of life and words, cheers!
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