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Rs 2,000 Cr worth of tunnel being built on Austrian model in J&K, to open for public use in March

Last Updated on February 2, 2021 at 7:54 pm

The four-lane Qazigund-Banihal tunnel is consistently being constructed and if everything goes according to the plan then it might be open for public this year in March. This tunnel is 8.4 km long and is named Navayuga Tunnel. It will connect the hilly region of Banihal to South Kashmir’s Qazigund area.

This tunnel, once in operation, will reduce the the distance between Banihal and Qazigund by 16 kilometers and will provide relief to the people who will get benefitted from it.

Muneeb Tak, Chief Manager, Navayuga Engineering Company said that this tunnel is established 400 metres beneath the existing Jawahar Tunnel on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway and it will decrease the travel distance between Qazigand and Banihal by 16 kms. During winters season, Srinagar-Jammu Highway is often closed because of harsh weather. This new tunnel will bypass Jawahar Tunnel and Shaitan Nalla which implies that vehicles will be able to move even during winters.

The Chief Engineer said that the construction work for tunnel is going as expected and if everything remains perfect then the tunnel will be open to public use by March this year. He claimed that this tunnelling project is an engineering masterpiece and Austrian Tunnelling Method (ATM) is used to construct it.

He said that to construct this tunnel, modern style and a futuristic “exhaust system” is used to remove gas from it and bring fresh air into it. A minimum of 126 Jet fans, 234 CCTV modern cameras and fire-fighting systems are also being installed in both tubes of the tunnel to make it more advanced.

The government is spending more than Rs 2000 crore to build this tunnel project. Navayuga Engineering Limited, an Andhra Pradesh based company, is executing this project. District Development Commissioner, Ramban Mussarat Islam, said that many reasons caused a delay in this project but now the work on this project is running full-fledged. He said that they are expecting that the tunnel will be inaugurated after over a month and it will open for public use in March this year.