GUWAHATI, Sept 21 - Maligaon-headquartered Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) is looking to complete the mega block to be undertaken, to facilitate faster conversion of the existing meter gauge track to broad gauge track, in the Badarpur-Kumarghat-Agartala section by March 2016.
Senior NFR officials told The Assam Tribune that the mega block will be started from October 1 and is likely to be completed by March 31, 2016.
Both passenger and goods trains in that section have been stopped with effect from September 20 on account of the planned mega block.
�The mega block has been granted for six months till March 31, 2016, to complete the entire conversion work of the Badarpur-Kumarghat-Agartala section. Preliminary work for undertaking the conversion work has already been done in consultation with all stakeholders,� said an official.
The mega block in the Badarpur-Kumarghat-Agartala (227 km) section comes after completion of the gauge conversion work in the Lumding-Silchar section. Goods trains are currently operating in the Lumding-Silchar section, while clearance for start of passenger services is awaited.
�The gauge conversion project in the Badarpur-Kumarghat-Agartala section is likely to be completed within six months. This will be followed by rolling of engine and then commissioning of the line,� NFR PRO Nripen Bhattacharya said. There will be a total of 28 stations in the entire section.
Officials said that with halt in the meter gauge train service in the section as of yesterday, meter gauge train services in the entire north-eastern region have ceased to exist.
�Completion of the project will not only ensure better connectivity of the Barak Valley region of Assam, along with Tripura and Mizoram, with the rest of the country, but is also going to boost trade and commerce in this region,� said an official.
In the 118-km Badarpur-Kumarghat segment, a major portion of which falls in Assam, the BG line will have 41 major bridges, 234 minor ones, six rail overbridges, two rail underbridges and 28 level crossings.