The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) Wednesday approved a new railway line between Bahraich and Khalilabad in Uttar Pradesh.

“The new line serves five districts of Uttar Pradesh including four aspirational districts — Bahraich, Balrampur, Shravasti and Siddharth Nagar and Sant Kabirnagar,” the ministry said in a statement.

The project will generate direct employment for about 57.67 lakh man-days. Estimated to cost Rs 4,939.78 crore, it will be completed by 2024-25, the statement said.

This line is significant for tourism as it passes through Shravasti district which is an important tourist place and is closely associated with the life of Gautam Buddha.

Shravasti is also an important tourist centre for Jains as the Sobhanath temple is believed to be the birthplace of the Tirthankara Sambhavanath.

The Devi Patan temple in Tulsipur, which is close to Balrampur town, is one of the famous 51 Shakti Peethas of Maa Durga.

Bahraich, Balrampur, Shravasti and Siddharth Nagar districts are among the 115 aspirational districts identified by NITI Aayog. Hence, this project is needed for better socio-economic development of the hinterland of this area with the help of rail network.