Srinagar: Finally the newly constructed railway track between Kashmir Valley and the Jammu region was successfully tested by the officials of Indian ruled Kashmir on Monday. However, two more test runs will be conducted before opening it for the people.
According to the recent reports, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will come here to inaugurate the railway line in January 2014. The first run was done by a special train with 53 wagons. This kind of train helps in placing concrete on the track.
The track between Udhampur and Katra stretches 25 kilometers and will avail the direct connection to those who are willing to visit Katra for Vaishno Devi pilgrimage.
"The working process will be finalized in 5 to 7 days. After that people will be able to travel through Katra," said Sanjay Kumar Gaur, a guard at the Jammu headquarters of the Railways.
Earlier, the authorities had conducted one more trail on December 7 when a light power engine was run from Udhampur to Katra.
"The railway administration will decide when to start the service. We may conduct two more trial runs. We are waiting for authorisation from the Centre for a railway information systems officer. After the authorisation, the administration will decide the date," said traffic inspector Rajeev Sabarwal.
After conducting a survey on a railway project between Jammu region and Kashmir Valley in 1998, the construction process had begun in 1999. At that time, 2005 was scheduled as the deadline for the completion of the project of directly connecting Katra with India. Almost 80 percent of the complete run passes through tunnels and bridges.