Work for Katra (J&K)-Delhi Express Road Corridor has begun and is expected to be ready for operational use by 2023, informed Minister of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions on Wednesday.
"The work has started on the first-of-its-kind Katra (Jammu and Kashmir) - Delhi Express Road Corridor which will be ready by 2023 and when it becomes functional, the travel time from Katra to Delhi will get reduced to around six and half hours, and from Jammu to Delhi to just about six hours," said the Ministry in a press statement.
Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh stated that once the Express Road Corridor becomes functional, people will prefer to travel to the national capital by road instead of undertaking the journey by train or by air.
The Katra (J&K)-Delhi Express Road Corridor is expected to connect the holy cities of Katra and Amritsar, as per the statement, and offer connectivity for other major religious shrines between the two destinations.
"Estimated to cost over Rs. 35,000 crores, the important cities through which this Expressway Corridor will pass include Jammu and Kathua in J&K, and Jalandhar, Amritsar, Kapurthala and Ludhiana in Punjab," read the statement.
Meanwhile, the Union Minister said, simultaneous widening of the National Highway between Pathankot and Jammu is also being undertaken, to upgrade it from 4-lane to 6-lane, which will also ease the travel for the commuters between Jammu, Kathua and Pathankot.
Scheduled to be completed within a timeline of three years, Dr Singh said, the road corridor will prove to be a "path-breaking revolution" in promoting industry and investments in the entire region.
As per the press statement, Singh, who is a Member of Parliament (Lok Sabha) representing Katra Vaishno Devi, had been pursuing this project since 2015 and had for the first time about three and half years ago announced during a programme at Katra that he had submitted a proposal to this effect which had been accepted by the Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari but it would take time because of procedural issues etc.
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