CRS To Inspect Banihal-Qazigund Section On June 18

CRS To Inspect Banihal-Qazigund Section On June 18

12 June 2013
The Daily Excelsior
Mohinder Verma

Banihal: The Commissioner of Railway Safety (CRS) R K Kardam is going to conduct statutory inspection of Banihal-Qazigund Section of the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla rail link on June 18 in order to pave the way for inauguration of the section by the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh and subsequent chugging of the trains. Official sources told EXCELSIOR that Commissioner of Railway Safety has conveyed to the IRCON International Ltd, the project-executing agency, and the Northern Railways that he will conduct detailed inspection of the Banihal-Qazigund section, which is having 11.21-kilometer long tunnel on June 18. Any railway section is opened for the normal train traffic only after the CRS issues certificate declaring that the section conforms to all the safety parameters and fulfill other laid down criteria including the facilities for the passengers. Accompanied by his entire team from all the wings and top officers of the Open Line of the Northern Railways, the CRS, who has already examined the documents relating to the Qazigund-Banihal section particularly the 11.21 kilometer long tunnel, will minutely inspect each and every feature to ensure that no lacunae was left by the project executing agency, sources said. The trial run on this section was successfully done on December 28 last year. This section will have two main railway stations – Banihal in Jammu division and Qazigund in Kashmir division besides five sub-stations inside the 11.21-kilometer long tunnel. With the opening of this section, the distance between Banihal and Qazigund will get reduced from 35 km to 17 km. Known as Pir Panjal tunnel, it is the longest transportation tunnel in India and third longest in Asia. The tunnel has been constructed by using New Austrian Tunnelling Method, which was for the first time used on such a large scale in India. According to the sources, the tunnel with 6.629 meter height has been made semi waterproof by providing PVC membrane between primary and secondary lining. The elevation of tunnel at South Portal is 1713 meter while as it at the elevation of 1756 meter at North Portal. The highest elevation inside the tunnel is 1771.75 meter. A three-meter wide road has been provided inside the tunnel for maintenance, emergency rescue and relief operations. Linear fire detection system has been installed along full length of the tunnel. Moreover, censors have been installed at every 500 meter to monitor air velocity while as service and emergency telephones have been provided at every 250 meter besides CCTV cameras at every 62.5 meter on tunnel walls. For important announcements, loudspeakers have been installed at every 125 meter on tunnel walls. Sources further said that for interrupted power supply to tunnel emergency lighting, escape signs and escape route orientation signs, emergency call and service telephone system, fire detection system, CCTV system, tunnel radio system, public address system and tunnel control system battery bank has been created. Elaborating tunnel control, sources said that all the systems of tunnel like CCTV and Emergency call have been interconnected and there will be automatic operation of equipment (ventilation, lighting, public address system etc). The control centre will ensure monitoring of equipment by tunnel operators round the clock, visualization of equipment’s status on screens, monitoring by CCTVs, automatic and manual handling of alarms (fire and SOS) and communication with rescue teams, maintenance staff and people in tunnel. It is pertinent to mention here that M-s GC-Rites is the consultant for the tunnel while as HCC Ltd, Savronik System India Pvt Ltd, C Doctare & Co. Pvt Ltd and ETA Engineering India Pvt Ltd are the main contractors of IRCON International Ltd.