Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Strategic Highway Tunnel on Saturday, October 3 in the Himalayan region, the tunnel leads to the disputed area, which borders China.
Narendra Modi inaugurated the highway tunnel at a time when the two major neighbours of the Asian continent, China and India, are facing each other in the eastern Ladakh region. Addressing the inauguration ceremony, Narendra Modi said that the construction of this tunnel has given a new impetus to the Indian border structure.
He termed the tunnel as Atal Tunnel as a ‘lifeline’ for the people of Ladakh region.
The length of this strategic tunnel is more than nine kilometres and through it, India’s land route with Ladakh will continue throughout the year. The tunnel is named ‘Atal Tunnel’ after Hindu nationalist politician and former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Vajpayee laid the foundation stone for the tunnel in 2002.
Hundreds of workers and engineers worked on the tunnel for more than 18 years, building and excavating the mountain. The tunnel is 3,000 meters (9842 feet) above sea level.
On the other hand, thousands of Indian and Chinese troops are facing each other on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the same mountainous region. It’s been several months since the latest tensions there.
Top military officials and government officials from both countries have been in talks to reduce tensions, but no major progress has been made so far.