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A 9.8km tunnel on the Banihal-Katra railway link in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir has been completed, the Press Trust of India reported citing officials.

The tunnel has been designed to connect two stations on the 111km Banihal-Katra railway link, which is currently under construction.

This line is being constructed as part of the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Railway Line (USBRL) project.

This year in January, the 12.6 km tunnel called T-49B was completed, which is claimed to be the longest tunnel of Indian Railways.

Furthermore, the overarch deck of the rail bridge has been completed with a golden joint over the Chenab river in the Kouri area of the Reasi district. It is said to be the highest rail bridge in the world.

An official was quoted by the news agency as saying: “We have succeeded in completing the construction work on the tunnel between Dugga and Sawlakote stations in the Katra-Banihal section of the USBRL.”

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With the completion of this tunnel, the Dugga railway station, situated on the Jammu end, has been linked with Basindadar (Sawalkote) railway station at the Srinagar end.

The USBRL project has a total length of 272km, of which 161km was commissioned in phases.

In October 2009, the first phase of the 118-km Qazigund-Baramulla section was commissioned.

The 18km Banihal-Qazigund was commissioned in June 2013, and the 25km Udhampur-Katra in July 2014.

The 111km Katra-Banihal section features 37 bridges and 35 tunnels.