Lessons from the Atal Tunnel project at Rohtang, which took a decade to get operational, are helping speed up work at the strategic Sela project in Arunachal Pradesh, which is set to be completed at record pace by next year.
The project involves construction of two tunnels that will provide all-weather connectivity to Tawang, a strategic sector captured by China in the 1962 war before retreating behind the Line of Actual Control. Bunkers overrun by PLA are still visible at Sela.
Once complete, the tunnel will become the longest bi-lane tunnel at an altitude of over 13,000 feet and is expected to not only help the military maintain a strong posture in the sector but also aid in the development of Tawang. Being built to military grade, the tunnel will have a clearance of 5.5 metres and all type of weapon systems currently in service – tanks, armoured vehicles, rocket and missile launchers – will be able to traverse the Sela pass throughout the year.
“We need massive snow clearances efforts in winter and only 4×4 vehicles with chains are able to cross. The tunnel will cut down travel time by almost an hour and will give all weather connectivity,” Colonel Parikshit Mehra, Project Director, Sela Tunnel said.Internet Explorer Channel Network