Jammu: An old railway station of Jammu, which was built in 1897 but abandoned after partition of the country, will be developed as a heritage site.
The Bikram Chowk Railway station went out of use when the rail link to Sialkot (now in Pakistan) was snapped after partition in 1947. Till then, train services would operate between Jammu and Sialkot, passing through R S Pura, Miran Sahib and Suchetgarh.
Divisional Commissioner (Jammu) Raghav Langer said the government is planning to develop the historical railway station as a heritage site to attract tourists visiting the City of Temples.
He gave the information as he visited the Railway station and assessed the renovation requirements and issued instructions for starting the preliminary work to materialize the restoration plan.
“Development of new attractions and up-gradation and improvement of the existing infrastructure for promotion of tourism is one of the priority sectors of the government,” the Divisional Commissioner said.
While taking round of various blocks of the heritage station, Langer noted that various landmarks and remnants are still available at the site.
He said the railway station has a historical and heritage significance and extraordinary efforts should be made for restoring its past grandeur.
Refurbishment of the railway station would add another dimension to the Heritage Tourism in Jammu and Kashmir, he said.
He directed the concerned officers to go through the pictures available of the historic railway station as it had existed earlier, so that it is restored to its pristine glory.
The Divisional Commissioner directed the officials concerned to conduct a demarcation exercise and submit complete report, along with survey numbers involved, land title and other revenue details of the site.
He also directed the concerned to take drone shots of the station and mark the buildings, area which could be renovated.
Public representatives informed the Divisional Commissioner that the land belonged to the Railways Department of the erstwhile state and it was supposedly transferred to the Transport department in 1954 and presently the yard and workshop of JKRTC is located there.
The Tourism department and JSCL were directed to make a project report (proposal) for the renovation of the railway station including all the important components of the project.