GUWAHATI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday inaugurated Atal Tunnel in Himachal Pradesh’s Rohtang. The tunnel will cut down the distance between Leh and Manali by 46km and the travel time by four to five hours.
Here are the ten important points about this tunnel:
* The decision to construct Atal Tunnel was taken on June 3, 2000, by the then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. The foundation stone for the tunnel was laid on May 26, 2002.
* On 25 December 2019, the Rohtang tunnel was renamed as Atal Tunnel in the memory of Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
* Atal Tunnel is located at a distance of 25km from Manali at an altitude of 3,060 meters.
* The 9.02km long tunnel has been built with ultra-modern specifications in the Pir Panjal Range of the Himalayas.
* It is a horseshoe-shaped, single tube double lane tunnel with a roadway of 8 metres and an overhead clearance of 5.525 metres.
* It has been designed for a traffic density of 3,000 cars and 1,500 trucks per day with a maximum speed of 80 km/hr.
* The tunnel is 10.5-metre wide and a 3.6×2.25 metre fireproof emergency egress tunnel has been built into the main tunnel itself.
* The tunnel is equipped with various security features such as CCTV cameras, telephone connections at every 150 metres for any emergency, fire hydrant mechanism at every 60 metres and auto incident detection system.
* There are evacuation lighting and exit signs at every 25 metres and broadcasting system throughout the stretch.
* The initial estimation for completion of the tunnel was Rs. 950 crores. The project, however, was completed at a cost of over Rs. 3,200 crores, which is over three times the initial value.