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Webdesk, TNI Rangpo, 05th February, 2023: The Honorable Minister of Railways, IT and Communication Mr. Ashwini Vaishnav started inspecting the proposed Rail Link between Sevoke and Rangpo that connects the state of Sikkim with the rest of country. The Honorable Minister was supposed to go directly to Gangtok. However, it was found that at the border three Ministers were waiting to receive him. He inspected Junction arrangements at Sevoke and instructed the officials to make it as a Gate way to Sikkim. The state of Sikkim, at present is connected by road only i.e. NH 31A that passes through very steep slopes. It faces frequent disruptions during monsoons every year. Presently, because of the increased traffic demand, there is a tremendous pressure on the road, making it more vulnerable to damages and the journey to Sikkim is getting more stressful. It is expected that the upcoming railway connectivity will provide a reliable and comfortable transportation infrastructure and thus make the journey to Sikkim faster and hassle free. The ongoing project is of great strategic importance in this part of the country with future connectivity to Gangtok and thereafter towards Indo-China Border (i.e. upto Nathula Pass). It is going to play a vital role in meeting the Defence requirements during possible war situation with China. The Salient features of the railway project is total length – 44.98 Km (Sikkim: 3.43 Km WB: 41.6 Km), sanctioned cost – Rs. 4086 Cr., total expenditure till March 2022 – Rs. 2062 Cr., Outlay for Financial Year 2022 -2023 – Rs. 2500 Cr. On the otherhand, as per the technical information are concerned, total numbers of tunnels – 14 (longest Tunnel – 5.27Km): 38.68 Km (86%), number of bridges – 21 (13 Major, 8 – Minor), total length of bridges – 2.24 Km (5%), length of the longest bridge – 375 mtrs, total number of stations – 5 (Sevoke, Riyang, Teesta (Under Ground), Melli and Rangpo).