The four dhams have their varied and distinctive elevation levels along with unique spiritual significance.
New Delhi: The popular “Char Dham” pilgrimage route of Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamunotri would soon be connected through rail link.
Railway minister Suresh Prabhu will lay the foundation stone for the final location survey for single broad gauge line in Badrinath on May 13. The Rail Vikas Nigam Limited (RVNL), a railway PSU, has been entrusted with the task of undertaking the final survey for rail connectivity to Chardham — Gangotri, Yamunotri, Badrinath and Kedarnath — through Dehradun and Karanprayag.
The RVNL had in 2014-15 done a reconnaissance engineering survey and submitted a report in October 2015. According to the survey, the total route length is 327 km and will cost Rs 43,292 crore. It recommended 21 new stations, 61 tunnels totalling a tunnel length of 279 km and 59 bridges. The existing rail heads or the nearest railway stations to the proposed Char Dham are Doiwala, Rishikesh and Karanprayag.
The four dhams have their varied and distinctive elevation levels along with unique spiritual significance. The Yamunotri tracing the origin of the river Yamuna is situated at 3,293 metre above mean sea level while Gangotri tracing the origin of River Ganga is situated at 3,408 metre above MSL, a railway official said.
Kedarnath housing the shrine of Lord Shiva, is one of the 12 Jyotilingas at 3,583 metre height, while Badrinath housing.