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India helping upgrade Northern Railway line

India is helping Sri Lanka upgrade the train tracks from Maho to Omanthai on the Northern Line, a project costing more than US$ 90 million.

A stretch of some 130 km of track will be upgraded. This track has not been renewed for more than a hundred years, a press release from the Indian High Commission said.

The project comes under Indian Concessional financing and an agreement for the project was signed in Colombo today July 18 between the government of Sri Lanka and IRCON International Ltd.

The upgrade includes 12 crossing stations, 7 halt and 78 level crossings.

It would double the speed trains can run from the current around 60 km to 120 km per hour, as well as reduce the maintenance costs. 

It will also improve the travel comfort of passengers, and further contribute to the modernization Sri Lanka Railways.

India has so far committed Lines of Credit worth around US$ 1.3 billion for development of the railway sector in Sri Lanka. The restoration of arterial railway lines, connecting the North and the South after decades of conflict, was undertaken under Indian concessional financing, the press release said.

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