Last Updated: February 13, 2024, 18:49 IST
PM Modi during his visit to Srinagar in 2019. (X)
Modi will address a public rally in Jammu, the minister of state in the Prime Minister’s office, who was in his parliamentary constituency Udhampur witnessed the stoppage of the Katra-Delhi Vande Bhart Express train at the Martyr Captain Tushar Mahajan Railway station
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate a slew of projects and address a rally during his visit to Jammu and Kashmir on February 20, Union Minister Jitendra Singh said on Tuesday.
Modi will address a public rally in Jammu, the minister of state in the Prime Minister’s office, who was in his parliamentary constituency Udhampur witnessed the stoppage of the Katra-Delhi Vande Bhart Express train at the Martyr Captain Tushar Mahajan Railway station, said.
The brief stoppage of the medium-distance superfast express train at Udhampur and Kathua railway stations was introduced to facilitate the people of the area.
“We wanted the prime minister to visit J-K before the start of the election code of conduct. His programme has been finalised for February 20 during which he will launch various projects and also address a public meeting,” the minister told reporters in Udhampur.
During the visit, the prime minister will inaugurate an All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Vijaypur in Samba, the highest railway bridge over Chenab in Reasi district, Devika project at Udhampur, the IIM Jammu and Shahpur-Kandi Dam project.
The 1.3 km Chenab rail bridge located 359 metres above the river bed — 35 metres higher than the iconic Eiffel Tower in Paris — forms a crucial link in the 111-km stretch from Katra to Banihal, which is part of the ongoing prestigious Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla Railway Link (USBRL) project.
Modi is also likely to inaugurate over 33-km Banihal-Samber section which is ready for train operations, the officials said, adding the dream project to connect Kashmir with the rest of the country through train is rescheduled for May to complete the pending works.
The minister said Jammu and Kashmir, especially Udhampur has always remained on the priority list of the prime minister who started his 2014 election campaign after ‘darshan’ at the Mata Vaishno Devi shrine.
He also thanked the Railway minister for accepting the demand of the people for the stoppage of the Vande Bharat train at Udhampur and Kathua.
“The railway ministry accepted our demand and we are thankful to them. Udhampur, which houses the headquarters of the northern command, is going to emerge as an important juncture after Kashmir is connected with the rest of the country by train in the next two to three months,” the minister said.
He said the railway station has been included in the Amrit Rail station category for its development.
Likewise, Kathua district borders Himachal Pradesh and Punjab and the new initiative (stoppage of Vande Bharat) will boost industry and trade besides facilitating the youth, especially the students, the minister said.
(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – PTI)