Thursday, 25 July, 2024, Reg No- 06
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Rajshahi-Kolkata train service set to resume after 77yrs

Published : Tuesday, 25 June, 2024 at 12:00 AM  Count : 146

RAJSHAHI, June 24: The train service between Rajshahi and Kolkata is set to resume after a 77-year hiatus.

This announcement was made following a meeting between the prime ministers of Bangladesh and India on Saturday last.

In addition to sparking hope among Rajshahi people, the train services are expected to boost the economy of Rajshahi significantly coupled with alleviating the travel difficulties faced by people.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Delhi, where they discussed several bilateral initiatives. Among the 13 initiatives announced, the revival of the Rajshahi-Kolkata train service stood out.
Since the announcement, people from various professions in these region believe that the new train service will not only facilitate travel for the northern region, including Rajshahi, but also create a new communication link with India.

Mayor of Rajshahi City Corporation AHM Khairuzzaman Liton said the Rajshahi-Kolkata train will enhance Rajshahis importance in communications with India, Nepal, and Bhutan, potentially turning Rajshahi into a hub for trade and commerce.

It, furthermore, will alleviate the travel difficulties faced by people from the Rajshahi region travelling to India.

Mayor Liton, who is also presidium member of Bangladesh Awami League, said Rajshahi was connected to Kolkata via rail through Malda and Murshidabad in India.

However, this connection ceased following the partition of India and Pakistan in 1947.

Despite the interruption, a significant number of people from the Rajshahi region continue to travel to India for various purposes, such as medical treatment and tourism.

The Rajshahi-Kolkata train has always been considered crucial. Thus, after the establishment of the Dhaka-Kolkata and Khulna-Kolkata routes, the Rajshahi-Kolkata train has gained even more significance.

At present, there is only a cargo train connection with India through the Rohanpur railway port in Gomastapur upazila of Chapainawabganj district, which has led to renovations of railways in both countries.

Sources closed to West Zone of Bangladesh Railway said the Rajshahi-Kolkata train will traverse through Rohanpur border in Chapainawabganj, then through Singabad, Malda, Farakka, Katwa, and Khagraghat in India to reach Howrah station in Kolkata.

This route covers a distance of 425km and takes approximately 11 hours. On the contrary, a 215-kilometer route through the Gede border would take about five and a half hours.    —BSS

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