Kendrapara,Feb 23 (LocalWire): The government is likely to miss its March 2019 deadline set for the construction of a 82-km-long railway line from Haridaspur to the port town of Paradip, covering three districts.
Besides covering Jajpur and Jagatsinghpur districts, the new line would bring the Kendrapara district into the railway map. The project is now expected to be completed by December.
The delay has already pushed up the cost, an official privy of the development said.
“Almost 75 percent of the work has been completed. We have already laid 32 kilometers rail track. Installation of signboards, telecommunication systems, construction of level crossing are going on.
“We have also built 31 large bridges and 164 small bridges for the project,” said Prasant Kumar Mishra, managing director of Haridaspur-Paradip rail-line project.
While its construction was first sanctioned in 1996-97, the foundation stone was laid only on 4 April, 1999 by then Union railway minister Nitish Kumar.
The rail line would help transport steel products and imported coking coal from Paradip to the industries in the adjoining areas.
Once the project is completed, the travel time between Daitari-Banspani iron ore belt and Paradip port would be cut by half. The rail link is also close to the major industrial hub of Duburi and the iron ore fields in Keonjhar district.
In the past, railway ministers paid lip services to this project by allocating meager funds for the project, as a result, it was moving at a snail’s pace.
But the Modi government has given more funds to complete the project within this year, said former Rajnagar MLA and BJP leader Alekha Kumar Jena.