Govt to connect country to int’l railway network

Several development projects are underway to connect the country’s railway network with SAARC railway, BIMSTEC, SASK and Trans-Asian Railway networks in the coming days. As per its planning, the government had already constructed 401.33 kilometers (km) new rail line form 2009. Besides, it also completed construction of 362 rails bridges, 98 station buildings, and upgradation of 248.50 km rail line to dual gauge.

Once the current fiscal’s project is completed, the country will have a total of 1162.97 km new rail line, 140 new locomotives, 700 new passenger carriages, 1000 wagons, and 125 luggage vans. Railways Minister Nurul Islam Sujan came up with these comments while speaking at a press briefing on the first anniversary of 11th National Parliament as chief guest at Railway Bhaban in the capital on Tuesday.

He said, “Once neglected the railway sector is now reaching towards a new height only for the visionary leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. The government is emphasizing building the latest, safe, and comfortable railway network across the country”. “After forming the Awami League government in 2009, a total of 86 projects were taken,, of which 77 projects have been completed. As a result, the country’s railway network has expanded and passenger service quality increased”, he added.

The sector which was lagging behind due to lack of rolling stock is now decorated with 46 locomotives (20 meter-gauge (MG) and 26 broad-gauge (BG)), 20 set DEMU, 412 passenger carriages, 516 wagons, 30 breakeven, six relief cranes, two train washing plants, two locomotive simulators, informed the minister.

About the closed stations and railway services, the Sujan said, activities of 62 railways stations have been resumed, 111 stations signaling system have been upgraded with the latest technology, 135 new train services have been introduced and 40 existing train services have been extended to provide the best passenger and carriage services to the country’s people.

“From January last year to until now, a total of eight intercity train services-- Banalota Express, Pachagarh Express, Benapole Express, Kurigram Express, and others-- have been introduced while some existing train services extended. Banalota Express’s route has been extended up to Chapainawabganj and Pabna Express routes extended up to Dhalar Char. In continuation to this, Faridpur Express service will be extended up to the Vanga route”, Sujan added further.

To increase its service, the authority concerned is also going to receive 10 BG and 10 MG locomotives from Indian Railways. Besides, to offer better service quality, the government has already introduced ‘Rail Sheba’ apps to stop rail ticket black-marketing. In the railways master plan in six phases (2016-2045), 230 new projects will be completed at a cost of taka 553662 crores. Once these projects are completed, railways will have new 2715.58 km rail line and many more.