Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the strategic Atal Tunnel located in Himachal Pradesh's Rohtang at 10 am on Saturday. The Prime Minister tweeted, "The Atal Tunnel will solve a major problem of connectivity in the region. It has several salient features and will further 'Ease of Living' for local citizens. Will also join public programmes in Sissu in Lahaul Spiti and at Solang Valley."
The #AtalTunnel will solve a major problem of connectivity in the region. It has several salient features and will further ‘Ease of Living’ for local citizens. Will also join public programmes in Sissu in Lahaul Spiti and at Solang Valley.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 2, 2020
The 9.02 km long Atal tunnel is the longest highway tunnel globally, connecting Manali-Lahaul Spiti valley. The South Portal of the Atal Tunnel is situated at 25 kms from Manali at an altitude of 3,060 metres whereas the north portal of the tunnel is located near Teiling village located in Sissu.
The tunnel is built with ultra modern specifications in the Pir Panjal range of Himalayas coupled with telephone connectivity at every 150 metres in case of emergency at an altitude of 10,000 metres from the Mean Sea Level (MSL). It is a horseshoe shaped, single-tube double lane tunnel comprising a roadway of 8 metres and has an overhead clearance of 5.525 metres. The 'Atal ' has been designed for a traffic density of 3,000 cars per day and 1,500 trucks per day with a maximum speed of 80 kmph.
The Atal Bihari Vajpayee government took the call to construct the strategic tunnel below the Rohtang Pass on June 3,2000 and laid the foundation stone for access to the south portal of the tunnel on May 26, 2000. On December 24, 2019, the central government decided to name the Rohtang Tunnel as Atal Tunnel as a mark of respect to the former Prime Minister on his 95th birth anniversary.
At 09:10 am, PM Modi arrived at Manali's Sasse helipad on a Mi-17 helicopter. From here, the Prime Minister headed towards the Sasse Guest House via road. Post this, PM Modi headed towards the South Portal to inaugurate the Atal Tunnel and also inspected the 'Atal'. After the inauguration ceremony, PM Modi will attend public functions at Sissu in Lahaul Spiti and at Solang Valley.