Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday rolled out a series of railway projects across the Northeast, besides commissioning a methanol plant and laying the foundation stone for a bridge over the Brahmaputra river. Modi virtually inaugurated the five railway works along with other projects from the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati, where he is on a day-long tour.
The new railway projects rolled out by him are Digaru-Lumding and Gauripur-Abhayapuri sections, while doubling of tracks between New Bongaigaon and Dhup Dhara was also inaugurated.
Electrification of the Raninagar-Jalpaiguri-Guwahati, Senchoa-Silghat and Senchoa-Mairabari sections was also launched by Modi. The total cost of these projects is Rs 7,300 crore.
The Prime Minister also laid the foundation stone for the Palasbari-Sualkuchi bridge over the Brahmaputra river. It will be constructed at an expenditure of Rs 3,200 crore over the next 3-4 years.
The state government has already received environmental and other clearances from various agencies for starting the construction work.
Modi also virtually commissioned a methanol plant at Namrup in Dibrugarh by Assam Petrochemicals Ltd (APL) with 500 tonnes per day (TPD) capacity, constructed at an investment of Rs 1,709 crore.
In this plant, the Assam government has a 51 per cent stake and 49 per cent is held by Oil India. After commissioning, APL will be able to sell methanol to other states as well as export to neighbouring countries.
The fourth project launched by Modi is the Rs 124-crore beautification work of the ‘Rang Ghar’, an amphitheatre built by Ahom King Pramatta Singha in the 18th century. This two-storied oval-shaped pavilion in Sivasagar is one of the largest of its kind in Asia.
The Prime Minister also witnessed a mega Bihu dance, organised to globally showcase the folk dance form as a mascot of cultural identity and life of the Assamese people.
This event featured more than 11,000 dancers and drummers in a single venue. After a performance on Thursday, the Bihu recital made two Guinness World Records — the largest Bihu dance performance in a single venue and the largest ‘dhol’ recital in a single venue.