Govt approves rail link to Sikkim | india | Hindustan Times
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Govt approves rail link to Sikkim

Sikkim will soon be connected with the rest of the country through a rail link, with the Centre deciding to construct a 52.7-km long rail line from Rangpo to Sivok in West Bengal.

india Updated: Nov 06, 2008 15:50 IST

Sikkim will soon be connected with the rest of the country through a rail link, with the Centre on Thursday deciding to construct a 52.7-km long rail line from Rangpo to Sivok in West Bengal.

A meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, approved the "national project" at a cost of Rs 1,339.48 crore.

The broadguage line project, which is expected to provide the much-needed rail connectivity to Sikkim, is likely to commence in the current financial year and completed by 2015-16.

Being a national project, its funding pattern would be 25 per cent from the gross budgetary support of the Railways and the remaining 75 per cent from the Finance Ministry. The same funding pattern is adopted for similar projects in the Northeastern region.

"The new broadguage line will provide rail connectivity to Sikkim and it would make possible direct movement of freight and passengers from this region to other parts of the country," Minister of State in PMO Prithviraj Chavan said.

The rail project would be executed by the Northeast Frontier Railways and its construction would start before the end of the ongoing financial year. This would be the tenth national project in the Northeastern region.