Kerung-Kathmandu railway possible
Kathmandu, 26 August: Recently conducted feasibility study has confirmed that the Rasuwagari-Kathmandu railway line is technically possible. According to Madhusudan-Adhikari, secretary at the Transportation and Physical Infrastructure Ministry, who has just returned after attending the bilateral meeting held in China on construction of the railway line, the Chinese side has informed that railway line construction is technically possible, according to local daily newspapers. What will be the investment modality, it has not been decided. In October, next bilateral meeting is going to take place in Nepal. At that meeting, discussion will be held on investment modality, said Adhikari. According to Naya-Patrika daily, it is assumed that China may not be ready to construct the railway line under total grant. Therefore, the Nepali side should be ready to invest at least 20 percent of the construction cost, according to Prakashbhakta-Upadhaya, senior engineer at the Railway Department. China has constructed trans-border railway line upto Laos giving grant upto 70 percent. If Nepal will also become ready to invest 20 percent of the project cost, it will give a message that Nepal is also serious on construction of the project, Upadhaya said. Primary estimated cost for the project is 257 billion rupees and if Nepal will invest 20 percent of the amount, 51.4 billion rupees that Nepal has to manage. Whether the Chinese side will become ready on this proposal, it is not clear. Railway First Survey and Design Institute, consultant company of the China National Railway, has conducted the feasibility study. The Institute has proposed to develop detailed project report from Sigatshe to Kathmandu. In Rasuwaguri-Kathmandu portion of the railway line, seven tunnels along with two 19 and 17 km long tunnels have to be constructed. In total, 98 percent of the railway will have to pass through tunnels and bridges. It will take two years to completed the DPR.