Himachal Govt. releases Rs.12 Crore for Bhanupalli-Bilaspur-Beri rail line project

SHIMLA: Much awaited Bhanupalli-Bilaspur-Beri rail line project is now going to see the light of the day as Himachal Pradesh government has released Rs 12 crore out of its due share for the acquisition of land, while share from the Centre too is expected soon. This ambitious rail project was announced around 10 years back, but till date the process of land acquisition was not started.

Project Name: Bhanupali-Bilaspur-Beri BG Railway Line
Project Brief: The project involves laying of BG rail track between Bhanupalli-Bilaspur-Beri in Himachal Pradesh section involving Railway track, tunnel, viaducts, bridges.
Project route length: 64 KM (Kilometer)
LocationThe geographical location of the project in Himachal Pradesh

Sources in the state government said that in the first phase, 20km of land would be acquired for the 60km-project, of which 6km land is in Punjab and 14km in Himachal. Sources said the Union ministry of railway has to bear 75% of the total cost while the state government has to bear 25% cost. They said as the railway ministry is going to release its due share, before that, the state government has released some part of its share.

Recently, railway officials held a meeting with chief secretary V C Pharka in which they had informed about the release of railway’s share for the project. With the state government releasing its share now, hopes are for the early start of construction work.

While addressing a rally in Mandi on October 18, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said that Bhanupalli-Bilaspur-Beri rail line was conceived around 10 years back, but after elections same was shelved. He had said the Centre is starting work on the project. In a meeting held on August 8, 2007, in which chief secretary and secretary (finance and planning) from the state were present along with member engineering of railway board at Prime Minister’s Office in New Delhi, a decision was taken to include it as a national project.

The estimated cost of this project then was assessed as Rs 1,047 crore. The share was decided in the ratio of 75:25 between the railways and the state government. HP government was to contribute 25% (Rs 261.75 crore) of the total cost of the project including land. Ministry of railways had to arrange the balance funds and cost overrun.