Arunachal Pradesh, the land of the rising sun, is one of the Northeastern seven sister states. This is one of the most picturesque places in India. This state has the power to become a tourism hub. Working in this direction, Northeast Frontier Railway has done a tremendous amount of infrastructure development in this state. Itanagar, the capital city, became the second only state capital among the eight north eastern states after Guwahati to be on the railway map when in 2018 the first Broad guage passenger train chugged into Naharlagun station.
Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) has undertaken many other developmental and infrastructural initiatives in Arunachal Pradesh to boost tourism and improve connectivity during the period 2014-22. The Murkongselek - Pasighat new line (26.15 km), at a cost of Rs 661 crore, has been sanctioned for execution. Surveys for more new broad gauge lines are going on. Some important surveys like the Lekhapani to Deban via Nampong (75 km) ; Dumduma to Wakro ( 96 km) via Simulguri, Namsai and Chowkham; Dangri to Roing( 60 km) & Tinsukia ( Longpatia ) to Pasighat (300 km) via Kanubari, Deomali, Lekhapani, Jairampur, Kharsang, Miao, Diyu, Tezu, Bhismaknagar, Roing and Dambuk ; Dhalai Beel to Seijosa via Itakhola (18 km ); Naharkatia to Deomali (20 km ); Misamari (Bhalukpong) to Tawang (198 km) via Tenga; North Lakhimpur to Bame via Silapathar ( 87 km ); Pasighat to Rupai via Tezu (217.8 km) and Lekhapani and Kharsang (26.2 km) are going on in full swing.Once completed, these new lines will spearhead the eventual socio-economic boom in the state.
Apart from these new lines survey, other basic Railway infrastructures have also been augmented in Arunachal Pradesh. New Coaching Maintenance Depot was set up and commissioned at Naharlagun in March, 2020. Mechanised cleaning of Naharlagun station started from 2018-19. Toilets for Divyangjan have been provided at Gumto, Naharlagun and Bhalukpong stations. Train Indication Board, Coach Indication Board and Integrated Passenger Information System are provided at these stations. Passenger Reservation System, Unreserved Ticketing System and Free high speed Wi-Fi are also provided at nominated stations of Arunachal Pradesh. Point of sale machines for cash-less transactions were installed in Naharlagun and Bhalukpong stations. As a part of NFR’s Go-Green mission Naharlagun, Bhalukpong and Gumto stations have been provided with 100% LED lights during 2017-18. one 10 kwP solar power plant has also been installed in Naharlagun during 2018-19.
Naharlagun station was opened to both outward and inward goods traffic for ease of freight transportation. 55 freight trains arrived in Arunachal Pradesh with essential commodities and 39 parcel vans were loaded with various commodities for Arunachal Pradesh during 2021-22. Better rail connectivity in Arunachal Pradesh will benefit not only the local population but also the economy of entire Northeast region. Arunachal Pradesh holds an important position in the development and security of this region. Railway will continue its efforts in transforming Arunachal Pradesh for achieving holistic development of the Northeastern region.