Inauguration of the Atal tunnel: PM Modi will receive a traditional welcome

The Prime Minister, who will return to New Delhi the same day, will be accompanied by Union Defense Minister Rajnath Singh and Union Minister of State for Finance Anurag Thakur.

Hindustan Times / Shimla | Through HT correspondent, Shimla

UPDATE SEP 28, 2020 at 1:10 am IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will get a glimpse into the unique culture and traditions of Kullu and Lahaul-Spiti districts during his brief five-hour visit to Hill State on October 3 to inaugurate the Atal Strategic Tunnel in Rohtang.

According to the reception plan, approved by the cabinet, Modi will receive a great welcome on his arrival at four points according to the traditions of the neighborhoods. The Prime Minister, who will return to New Delhi the same day, will be accompanied by Union Defense Minister Rajnath Singh and Union Minister of State for Finance Anurag Thakur.

The PM helicopter will land at the Snow and Avalanche Study Establishment (SASE) helipad in Manali at 9 a.m. where it will be met by the Chief Minister of Himachal (CM) Jai Ram Thakur, the chairman of the assembly Himachal Vipin Parmar, urban development minister Suresh Bhardwaj, rural development and panchayati raj minister, Virendra Kanwar. Further arrangements were made in the event that the helicopter failed to land at the SASE heliport.

Jal Shakti Minister Mahendra Singh Thakur, Technical Education Minister Ramlal Markaday and Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Sarveen Chaudhary will greet the Prime Minister at the south portal of the tunnel.

Industries Minister Bikram Singh Thakur and Forestry Minister Rakesh Pathania will be stationed at the North Portal while Vice President Hansraj will oversee arrangements at Bhunter.

The 9.2-kilometer tunnel under the Rohtang Pass is named after former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who announced the project on June 3. The Atal tunnel is the longest tunnel in the world at an altitude of 3000 meters. It will reduce the distance between Manali and Leh by 46 kilometers and the journey time by 4.5 hours. It will also speed up the movement of troops to border areas.

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