Pir Panjal Railway Tunnel
Pir panjal railway tunnel
|Line||Jammu Tawi-Udhampur- Srinagar-Baramulla Railway Link|
|Location||Jammu and Kashmir|
|Line length||11.21 km (6.97 mi)|
|No. of tracks||single track|
|Track gauge||1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in) (Broad gauge)|
|Operating speed||up to 75 km/h (47 mph)|
The Pir Panjal Railway Tunnel or Banihal railway tunnel is an 11.215 km (7 mile) railway tunnel located in Pir Panjal Range of middle Himalayas in Jammu and Kashmir, India, north of Banihal town. It is a part of the Jammu–Baramulla line.
The north portal of the railway tunnel is atand its south portal is at .
Length and elevation
The average elevation of the 11.215-kilometre-long (6.969 mi) railway tunnel is 1,760 m (5,770 ft) or about 440 m (1,440 ft) below the existing road tunnel, the Jawahar Tunnel, which is at elevation of about 2,194 m (7,198 ft). The tunnel is 8.40 m wide with a height of 7.39 m. There is a three-metre-wide (9.8 ft) road along the length of the tunnel for the maintenance of railway tracks and emergency relief. It is India's longest railway tunnel. It takes approximately 9 minutes and 30 seconds for the train to cross the tunnel.
Progress of the project
The new 11.215 km (7 mile) long Banihal-Qazigund tunnel for the Jammu–Baramulla line connecting Bichleri Valley of Banihal with Qazigund area of Kashmir Valley has been constructed as a part of its Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla rail link project. The boring was completed in four years in October 2011, its lining and laying of rail tracks was completed in the next one year and trial run commenced on 28 December 2012. The tunnel was commissioned on 26 June 2013 and commercial runs started from 27 June 2013.
The rail tunnel reduces the distance between Quazigund and Banihal by 17 km (from 35 km by road to 17.5 km by train). Banihal railway station is situated at 1,702 m (5,584 ft) above mean sea level. The railway network in Kashmir from Banihal to Baramulla is now 137 km. Until the 148 km Katra-Banihal section of Jammu–Baramulla line gets constructed (may open in 2012), people can travel from Jammu Tawi or Udhampur to Banihal by road and take the train from Banihal to Srinagar through the Banihal railway tunnel.
View towards the massive Pir Panjal range the Railway line passes through it.
- "J & K Project Brief". usbrl.org.
- "India's longest railway tunnel unveiled in Jammu & Kashmir". The Times of India. 14 October 2011. Retrieved 14 October 2011.
- "Railways' Himalayan Blunder". Tehelka Magazine, Vol 8, Issue 32. 13 August 2011.