AGARTALA: In a historic move that is expected to revamp trade and commerce between India and Bangladesh, a successful trial run was conducted on Monday between Bangladesh’s Gangasagar and Tripura’s Nishchintapur railway link. The run was executed using a freight engine via the metre gauge track.
The railway link’s successful completion holds great promise for Tripura, offering immense potential in trade, commerce, and connectivity advancements.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will jointly inaugurate the Agartala-Akhaura Cross Border Rail Link Project in a virtual ceremony scheduled for 11 am on November 1. The Khulna-Mongla Port Rail Line Project will also be inaugurated during this event.
“The trial saw the goods train traverse a distance of over 8.1 kilometres, smoothly transitioning from Gangasagar to Nishchintapur. Our six-member team expertly managed the journey, ensuring its success,” Anindra Chowdhury, the Executive Engineer of the project, told the press.
Chowdhury further detailed that the metre gauge portion will soon be inaugurated for goods transport. However, addressing the aspect of passenger movement, Chowdhury stated, “We anticipate a month or two before we resolve the pending technicalities, especially regarding Broad Gauge connectivity.”
A jubilant Abdur Rahim, who piloted the locomotive to Nishchintapur, echoed sentiments of pride and optimism. “I’m honoured to be part of this monumental event, establishing the maiden railway connection between Bangladesh’s eastern region and India. This link is poised to significantly amplify tourism, business, and medical travels between the two neighbouring nations,” Rahim conveyed to the press.
Covering a span of 6.7 km, this section holds significance as part of a larger 15km railway link strategically connecting Agartala with Gangasagar in the Brahmanbaria district of Bangladesh.
Despite gaining approval in 2018, the project encountered setbacks, largely attributed to unforeseen challenges arising from the Covid-19 pandemic.
Earlier on September 14, a trial run of the railway line was successfully conducted. The trial journey, commencing from Gangasagar and concluding at the zero point in Nischintapur, was accomplished within a swift 20-minute duration, maintaining a steady speed of 30-km per hour.