The Union Ministry of Road Transport & Highways has inked MoU with IL&FS Transportation Networks Ltd for construction of the 14.150 km long, 2-lane bi-directional Zojila Tunnel in Jammu & Kashmir.
This would be India’s longest road tunnel and longest bi-directional tunnel in Asia. On completion, the tunnel will provide all weather connectivity between Srinagar, Kargil and Leh.
Zojila Tunnel Project
The project aims at construction of 14.150 km long two lane bidirectional single tube tunnel with parallel 14.200 km long egress tunnel between Baltaland Minamarg in J&K with total capital cost of Rs. 6808 crore. The duration for construction of the project is 7 years.
Its main objective is to provide all whether connectivity to strategically important Leh region in J&K which at moment is limited to 6 months in year because of snow on passes and threat of avalanches.
It will be first of its kind tunnel in such geographical area. It will have all modern technical safety arrangements such as cut and cross ventilation system, two axial fans, uninterrupted power supply, fully transverse ventilation system, CCTV monitoring, variable messaging boards, traffic logging equipment, tunnel radio, emergency telephone system etc.
The project has strategic and socio-economic importance and will be instrument for development of economically backward districts in J&K. It will also bring about all round economic and socio-cultural integration of these regions. This project, along with other ongoing projects like 6.5 km long Z-Morh tunnel at Gagangir will ensure safe, fast and cheap all weather connectivity between Kashmir and Ladakh. They will also increase employment potential for local labourers for project activities. It will also boost employment as local businesses will get linked to national market and region will receive round the year tourist traffic.