Colombo: The 27.5-km long Kilinochchi-Pallai railway line, reconstructed with India assistance in Sri Lanka’s former war zone, was today inaugurated that would help in reconciliation and development of the region.
The railway track has been built under the concessionary credit line of about USD 800 million provided by India to undertake the Northern railway reconstruction project in Sri Lanka.
Under this project, the segments already completed include the Medawachchiya-Madhu Road segment, inaugurated in May 2013 and the Omanthai-Kilinochchi segment, opened in September.
Indian High Commissioner Y K Sinha in his address described the inauguration of the Kilinochchi-Pallai railway line as another milestone in the historic partnership between India and Sri Lanka.
He said the reconstruction of Northern line would assist in restoration of normal life, generate and support livelihood-related activities, assist in restoring connectivity, not only within the Northern Province but also with the rest of the country, thus promoting development, reconciliation and greater integration.
Sinha noted that with the construction of the railway line up to Kataragama in the south and resumption of ferry service between Talaimannar and Rameshwaram, Sri Lankans would be able to travel by train from Hambantota and Matara in the south to Bodhgaya as also to Jammu and Kashmir in North India, Gujarat in the West, Assam and the North-eastern states in the East.
As Sri Lanka’s closest neighbour and long-standing partner, India is prepared to extend its fullest support to Sri Lanka in fulfilling its aspirations for peace, harmony, national reconciliation, the Indian envoy stressed.