Vasundhara Raje demands Rail Line from Barmer to Kandla Port for transportation of petro products

JAIPUR: Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje today demanded a rail line connecting Barmer to Kandla port for transportation of petrol, diesel and other petro products.

Speaking on the sidelines of the inking of an MoU of Rs 43,129 crore by the state with Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) for an oil refinery in Barmer district, she emphasised that the rail line will open further business avenues for the refinery and people of the state. “The rail line will also be helpful in meeting water requirement of the desert state,” she said. Raje urged the Union Minister for Petroleum, Dharmendra Pradhan to take up the issue with Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu.

For Indian Railways, the target for laying New Lines in 12th Five Year Plan was 4000 km subject to availability of resources. There were 8 ongoing New Line projects passing through the State of Rajasthan. To assess the feasibility and viability of Jaisalmer-Barmer-Kandla new line project, a survey from Jaisalmer to Bhabhar via Barmer has been completed in the year 2012-2013 as railway line already exists between Bhabhar and Kandla. As per the Survey reports, cost of 338.94 km new line has been assessed as Rs.1303.7 crore with a negative rate of return. In view of its unremunerative in nature, heavy throw-forward of ongoing projects and limited overall availability of resources the project has not got sanctioned earlier. Also, Ministry of Defence has also not agreed to fully finance the construction of Jaisalmer-Barmer line.

The BJP leader also expressed interest in starting courses at Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) of the state to meet the skilled manpower requirement of the upcoming refinery project in Barmer.

“We want our people to get jobs at the refinery. The proposed project will open job avenues in the sector and ITIs can churn out the talent, she added.

The Rajasthan government today inked a fresh MoU of Rs 43,129 crore with Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) for an oil refinery in Barmer district which will produce BS-VI fuel.

The state government will have 26 per cent stake in the refinery project while HPCL will have the rest shareholding.