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  • Sanjeev Kumar Rana
    Aug 3, 2004
      Earlier plans of laying rail tracks `better'
      Tribune News Service

      Solan, August 3
      Even as the Union Railways Minister, Mr Laloo Prasad Yadav, has
      announced a survey for laying a new railway track between Parwanoo
      and Darlaghat in the railway Budget not much enthusiasm is seen in
      the railway officials for the proposal. While asserting the need for
      laying a new rail track from Baddi to Chandigarh, the officials
      opined it could, besides fetching the much-needed revenue facilitate
      the industrialists investing in Baddi-Barotiwala after the
      announcement of the new industrial policy.
      The state has received very little since independence as far as
      railway expansion is concerned. While a mere 18-km rail track was
      laid between Nangal to Una some time back another stretch of 18-20
      km track laid further up to Talerala is the only other development
      in this direction. This track is part of a 75 km rail track to be
      laid between Una and Talwara, which is yet to be completed.
      An earlier proposal of the Railways to lay a broad- gauge track at a
      stretch of about 5-7 km between Kamli and Kalka extension stations
      could not materialise despite laying of a foundation stone by the
      then Union Railways Minister, Mr Nitish Kumar, in 1999. This is
      despite the fact that a budgetary provision of Rs 40 crore had been
      made for it. It was later found that the proposal would merely save
      the Parwanoo-based industrialists their octroi duty at the state's
      Investors and railway officials are of the unanimous opinion that an
      earlier survey carried out to lay a rail track from Bhanupalli near
      Anandpur Sahib through Bilaspur to Rampur Bushair covering about 180
      km will prove more beneficial. The survey was conducted by the Chief
      Minister, Mr Virbhadra Singh, during his earlier tenure.
      Another proposal to link the industrial town of Baddi to Chandigarh
      while reducing its distance by as many as 20 km to facilitate the
      industrialists was also mooted some time back. It is learnt that a
      railway land located on the Bharatgarh-Nalagarh road which was
      earlier used to carry stones can be put to use in case this proposal
      is considered. While linking Baddi to Nalagarh as well as to
      Bilaspur, the earlier proposal can also fetch the railways a
      handsome profit with industrial growth in the region. The fact that
      an LPG filling plant existed at Baddi, the new track can prove
      profitable for the Railways.
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