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NFR eyes early resumption of project work at Byrnihat

Authorities await green signal from Ri Bhoi DC

GUWAHATI: NF Railway is hopeful of resuming work on the 2.25km Byrnihat section of the 21.50km Tetelia-Byrnihat new line project immediately after the Ri Bhoi district administration gives the green signal.

The railway authorities had earlier this month requested the Ri Bhoi deputy commissioner for resumption of work at Byrnihat and a reply from the district administration is awaited.

“The Meghalaya government has already approved the resumption of work at Byrnihat and has assured to provide security. Accordingly, after a joint meeting we had sent a request for permission for resumption of work to the Ri Bhoi deputy commissioner on June 4. We are hopeful of a positive reply in the coming week so that we can resume work immediately,” an official from NFR (Construction Organisation) told The Shillong Times on Saturday.

Currently, a temporary security barrack has been constructed at the site and Meghalaya police has deployed eight security personnel.

The project, the anticipated cost of which is Rs 1400crore, was sanctioned in the year 2009-10 and there has been a delay caused by several hurdles with stops and starts in between.

Till date, railway sources have it on record that the project has made an overall physical progress of 52.47 per cent.

An expenditure of Rs 474.36crore has been made on the project till March 31, 2018. Of an allocation of Rs 150crore for the financial year, 2018-19, Rs 45.14crore has been incurred till May 31, 2018.

The Tetelia-Byrnihat project will have two stations (Kamalajari and Byrnihat), six tunnels with a length of 3.432km, seven major bridge and 48 minor bridges.

A length of 19.25km of track is in Assam while 2.25km is in Meghalaya.

“A clearance from the ministry of environment and forests was required to acquire land, which took time. There were protests by NGOs and subsequent damage to property in Byrnihat last year. Besides, an unauthorised building at Byrnihat yard was found after a joint land survey, the case of which is pending in Meghalaya High Court,” he said.

As it is, the railway authorities are planning to commission the 10-km Tetelia-Kamalajari section of the project by October this year.

“We are expecting a trial run on the 10km section once the monsoon season is over,” the official said.

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