Indian Railways Conducts Trial Run On World's Highest Railway Bridge In J&K, Taller Than The Eiffel Tower

Swarajya Staff

Jun 21, 2024, 12:56 PM | Updated 01:05 PM IST

The Chenab Rail Bridge. (Picture Via X)
The Chenab Rail Bridge. (Picture Via X)

Indian Railways on Thursday (20 June) successfully conducted a trial run of an eight-coach MEMU train on the Chenab Rail Bridge, the world’s highest railway bridge, located in Jammu and Kashmir.

The arch bridge, situated between Bakkal and Kauri in the Reasi district, stands 1,178 feet above the riverbed, creating a vital link between Katra and Banihal.

"After an extensive inspection of the newly constructed Chenab Bridge by senior officers from Railway Board, Northern Railway and Konkan Railway, a trial run was conducted on a 46-km-long electrified line section between Sangaldan in Ramban district and Reasi at a speed of 40 kmph," the Railway Ministry said in a statement.

"It was successfully carried out starting at 12:35 pm from Sangaldan and reaching Reasi at 2:05 pm. On the way it passes through nine tunnels with a combined length of 40.787 km and longest tunnel T-44 of 11.13 km," it added.

Previously, on Sunday, 16 June, Indian Railways had successfully carried out an engine trial run on this engineering marvel.

Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw had announced the successful electric engine trial through a post on X.

The iconic Chenab Bridge, with an overall length of 1,315 metres and an arch span of 467 metres, spans the Chenab River at a height of 359 metres (1,178 feet) above the riverbed. This makes it 35 metres taller than Paris's Eiffel Tower and the highest arch railway bridge in the world.

This bridge is a key part of the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Railway Link (USBRL) project, which is valued at Rs 35,000 crore.

The successful trial run on the bridge paves the way for initiating rail services on the 46-km Sangaldan-Reasi stretch, an essential segment of the USBRL project.

"After conduction of a series of such tests, this bridge would be open to run all train services which will be a monumental stride towards the seamless integration of the Kashmir valley with Jammu and the broader Indian landscape," the ministry announced.

The ministry further added, "This would foster social integration by facilitating easier movement of people and goods, thereby promoting cultural exchanges and regional development and boost to economic activities such as tourism and trade."

Aimed at providing an alternative and reliable transportation system to Jammu and Kashmir, Indian Railways has successfully laid a 272-km-long railway line from Udhampur to Baramulla, connecting the Kashmir valley with the rail network under the USBRL project.

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