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China to construct new rail line close to Arunachal Pradesh


Beijing (Oct 31, 2014): China has approved construction of a new strategically important railway line in Tibet which would come close to the Indian border in Arunachal Pradesh, state media reported on Friday.

China has approved the feasibility report for the construction of the railway linking Lhasa to Nyingchi in Tibet, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

This high altitude railway will be the second rail link to be built in Tibet after the Qinghai-Tibet Railway connecting Xining in neighbouring Qinghai province with Tibet's provincial capital Lhasa which became operational in 2006.

The plans were to construct linking Lhasa to Nyingchi in the east was announced in August. Nyingchi is located right on top of Arunachal, the nearest area to the borders.

In August this year, China inaugurated its extension of railway line in Tibet which come close to the Indian border in Sikkim besides borders of Nepal and Bhutan.

The 253-km railway line costing about USD 2.16 billion linked Tibet's provincial capital Lhasa with Xigaze, the second-largest city in the Himalayan region.

The railway expansion in Tibet will connect Nepal, Bhutan and India by 2020, official report here.

Today's official announcement about the construction of the new rail line came in the backdrop of India's plans to improve the road network along the border regions of Arunachal Pradesh, which China claims as Southern Tibet.

Reacting to India's plans to build 54 more border posts The Chinese military spokesman Yang Yujun said yesterday that India should shun moves that "may further complicate the situation" and do more to maintain peace in that area.

China and India have disputes over the eastern part of their border.