The Sivok – Rangpo new rail link railway project is one of the crucial connectivity projects for the North-eastern region. Constructing new railway lines to connect all the state capitals of North-eastern region is going on under capital connectivity projects of Indian Railways. Rail connectivity projects are significantly contributing towards transformation of the North-eastern states. The works for the Sivok – Rangpo new rail link railway project, among other connectivity projects, is also going on in full swing to establish a railway connection between Sikkim and the rest of the country. The Sivok – Rangpo project has already achieved physical progress of 55%.
The total length of the Sivok – Rangpo rail line project is 44.96 Km (41.55 km in West Bengal & 3.41 km in Sikkim). Out of the total length of 44.96 km, 38.623 km (86%) is in the form of tunnels, 2.24 km (5%) in Bridges and 4.79 km (9%) length in open cutting/filling of station yards. New Austrian Tunnelling Method (NATM) has been adopted for the construction of tunnelling works.30.11 km of tunnel mining works and 4.2 km of tunnel lining works have already been completed. The proposed line consists of 14 tunnels with longest tunnel of 5.30 km & the shortest tunnel being 538 metre long. There are 13 nos. of major bridges and 10 nos. of minor bridges in the project. Works for all the major bridges are in progress and works of 06 no’s minor bridges have already been completed. The project includes construction of five stations viz. Sivok, Riyang, Melli, Rangpo and one underground halt station viz. Teesta Bazar.
The estimated cost of the project is Rs. 12,474 crores. At present all the activities related to construction of tunnels, bridges and stations on this project are in progress on war footing basis and targeted to complete by December, 2024. This is one of the prestigious ongoing National projects in India and on completion of this project, first time the state of Sikkim will be connected via railways. Once completed, this project will ensure uninterrupted supply of essential commodities in Sikkim. It will be also be possible to introduce long distance train services from Sikkim to across various parts of the country. Tourism and economic activities of the state will also get a great boost.