Haridwar: Work on the proposed Rishikesh-Karnaprayag railway line is expected to begin in December 2016. In-principal clearance for the first phase of the project has already been given by the Union ministry of forests, environment and climate change. Formal clearance will be granted by the ministry after compliance of the conditions mentioned in the in-principal clearance letter, additional principal chief conservator of forests Vinod Singhal told.
One the clearance for the project is granted, the ministry will transfer around 300 hectares of forest land to the railways. According to the Forest Conservation Act, forest land is given for non-forestry projects after fulfilment of certain conditions. The ministry of railways is doing its best to comply with the conditions so that work on the 125 km railway line between Rishikesh and Karnaprayag kicks off early. Hopefully, it will begin by December, sources said. The process for grant of forest and environment department’s clearance for the second phase of the railway line project is also under way.
Once the project is complete, the journey from Rishikesh to Karnaprayag will become comfortable and take two to two and half hours less time. On the route passing through four districts of Uttarakhand including Dehradun, Tehri, Chamoli and Rudraprayag, there will be as many as 12 stations, the first being in the forest post area of Dehradun, reports said.