First passenger train engine arrives in Manipur
IMPHAL: An engine arrived on Monday at the newly-constructed Khongshang railway station in Manipur’s Noney district as part of a trial run for the first passenger train. Two months earlier, the first goods train arrived in the hill town in January.
Northeast frontier railways chief engineer Sandeep Sharma-led officials accompanied the engine from Jiribam via Rani Gaidinliu (Kaimai) and Thingou railway stations to reach Khongshang, covering about 62 km.
Women performed traditional dances of the Rongmei tribe to welcome the engine in Thingou and Khongshang. In a tweet, caretaker chief minister N Biren Singh shared a video of women performing the traditional dance at the Khongsang railway station. “In yet another milestone, happy to share that an engine has reached Khongsang Railway Station today. Under the visionary leadership of Hon’ble PM Shri @narendramodi ji, the impetus given to improve connectivity in Manipur will immensely boost the economy of the state.”
The 111-km Imphal-Jiribam railway line being constructed at an estimated cost of about ₹14,322 crore is set to be completed by December next year. It will have 11 stations covering five districts of Manipur. The project will connect Imphal with the country’s board gauge network. It involves hilly terrain and the construction of nearly 63 km of tunnels with the longest being 10.28 km.
The world’s highest bridge pier is also being constructed near Khumji in Noney as part of the project. The 141- meter-high bridge will surpass the 139-meter Mala-Rijeka viaduct in Montenegro.