Saturday, July 26, 2014

Palampur, July 25
Shanta Kumar, MP and senior BJP leader, today hailed the initiative of the Ministry of Defence and Finance to clear four strategic rail links along the border of India and China.

In a press statement, Shanta Kumar said he had repeatedly pleaded before the UPA Government at the Centre in the past 10 years to strengthen rail and road network along the border with China, “but the successive railway ministers turned a deaf ear to the dire necessity of matching our road and rail infrastructure with China”.
Shanta Kumar said he met Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Defence Minister Arun Jaitely and Railway Minister Sadanand Gaura recently and impressed upon them the need to strengthen rail network along the strategic Indo-China border as it was directly concerned with India’s integrity and security. He also pleaded to declare these rail projects as “national projects” so that there is no shortage of funds.
He said Modi had assured him that NDA Government would consider his proposals seriously and initiate necessary steps in this direction. Later the parliamentary committees on defence and finance cleared the proposals for setting up the four rail links along the China boarder in north east and Himachal Pradesh. These committees also approved the Pathankot- Joginder Nagar-Leh rail project. The matter would now be placed before the Union Cabinet for final approval.
Shanta Kumar said former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee had taken steps in this direction 15 years ago when he cleared the 14-km Rohtang Tunnel, which would be operational in the next two years.
Shanta said during his four rallies in the state for parliamentary elections, Modi had assured people of expansion of the rail network up to the China border.
He said in the wake of repeated border violations by the Chinese, it was paramount to expedite the work of a rail network on Indo-China border.
He said Pathankot -Joginder Nagar-Leh route was the safest for deployment of forces and carrying defence material to boarder areas beyond the firing range of Pakistan.

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