Defence Minister Inaugurates Webinar on Atal Tunnel; Says Spirit of National Pride is of Paramount Importance for Building Such Great Structures

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New Delhi. Border Roads Organisation (BRO) organised a Webinar on Atal Tunnel on January 11 to disseminate the experiences gained on this tunnel, for the benefit of IITs, NITs and other technical institutions.

Inaugurating the day-long Webinar, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh appreciated BRO engineers for building this engineering marvel despite many technical challenges amid COVID-19 restrictions. He cited the example of Seri Nalla, a fault Zone, which posed a serious challenge to even engineers from foreign countries.

“But our engineers succeeded in overcoming the Seri Nalla challenge,” the Defence Minister said, adding that for building such a great structure like Atal Tunnel not just bricks and mortar but the spirit of the national pride is of paramount importance. He recalled various past achievements of Indian scientists and engineers and said they have always shown their prowess in various streams.

Referring to the Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan, Singh said to overcome the COVID-19 challenges, “We were able to quickly mobilize our resources to produce PPE kits, masks, sanitizers etc. not only for our domestic requirements but also for supplying to other countries”.

He said government has given high priority to the development of border areas and BRO deployed 67 per cent of its workforce in Northern borders. Lauding the BRO’s efforts and achievements during 2020, amidst COVID-19 restrictions, the Defence Minister said there had been no cut in BRO budget.

On this occasion, he also released a Compendium documents listing the experiences and challenges encountered during the construction of the largest tunnel (9.020 km) in the World above 3000 mt elevation.

Inaugurating the Atal Tunnel, Rohtang on October 3 last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had suggested that such a compendium be brought out for the benefit of students and professionals of Engineering institutes.

This Webinar will enhance knowledge of all the faculty members and aspiring students, especially of final term students in tackling future challenges in tunnel construction. More than 1,000 people have participated in the Webinar.

Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat, Army Chief General MM Naravane, Defence Secretary Dr. Ajay Kumar and DG BRO Lt Gen Rajeev Chaudhry also attended the inaugural session.

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