Indian Railways has laid foundation for the Rs42.9bn ($843m) Rishikesh-Karanprayag rail project, connecting Garhwal region with the rest of the country.
The 125km rail line includes construction of 12 stations, 81 tunnels, 128 bridges (45 major and 83 minor) and a 535m viaduct between Sakni and Devprayag, all of which will be carried out by the state owned Railways Vikas Nigam (RVNL).
The line will pass through Dehradun, Tehri Garhwal, Pauri Garhwal and Chamoli districts, facilitating faster travel between Rishikesh and Karanprayag.
The rail line will provide rail access to pilgrimage places such as Kedarnath and Badrinath shrines, and provide connectivity to Devprayag and Rudraprayag.
Out of the 81 tunnels, 19 tunnels will have a length of more than 1km; the longest one, which will be built between Sakni and Devprayag, will be 4.475km .
The project will reduce the journey time from Rishikesh to Karanprayag from eight hours to four hours, and is expected to be completed in five years, according to timesofindia.indiatimes.com.