The government has started construction of an emergency landing airstrip, a 3-kilometer long runway in South Kashmir, amid an ongoing standoff between Indian and Chinese armies in Ladakh region along the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
The strip falls in Bijbehara area of Anantnag district, along the newly constructed NH-44.
The airstrip will be 3.5 Kilometers long and will be constructed at an estimated cost of around Rs 119 Crore. It is expected to be completed within a time frame of 8 months.
The work on the runway started three days ago, an official said, adding that it will act as emergency runway facility for fighter jets in case of any emergency.
Similar airstrips, the government sources said, have been sanctioned for some other states as well including West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat.
The passes for the construction of the runway to the trucks and workers were issued by the district administration, according to Free Press Kashmir.
Meanwhile, due to heightened tensions between India and China at the LAC in eastern Ladakh in recent weeks, both the countries continue to be on alert at the border.
The government, recently, also asked the railways to provide it with 11 trains to send around 11,815 labourers to border areas in Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand for road building activities by the BRO.
The conflict is said to include a range of issues due to different perceptions of the LAC, India building feeder link roads and bridges in the “finger areas” near the Galwan river. Both the countries have reinforced their positions with additional troops and heavy artillery.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Tuesday, “Indian and Chinese military leaders will meet on 6 June to resolve the Ladakh issue.”