The Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Ms Riva Ganguly Das called on the Union Minister Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr. Jitendra Singh, here today. The Secretary (DoNER) Dr Inderjit Singh and senior officers of the Ministry were also present on the occasion.
During the meeting, various ongoing projects were discussed. The Agartala-Akhaura Railway Link (Bangladesh) project was discussed, among other issues. It was discussed that the project will be completed by the year 2020.
The cost of the project is Rs 972.52 crores, which is being funded by M/o DoNER on the Indian side and by MEA on the Bangladesh side. The project will link Agartala with Bangladesh Railway Network at Akhaura. Once operational, it will cut the travel time for passenger and goods movement between Kolkata and Agartala. The Indian sided length is 5.46 km and Bangladesh side is 6.57 km. IRCON, CPSE of Railways is the executing agency for the Indian side and also Project Management Consultant for Bangladesh Railways.
Once operational, it will cut travel time of rail journey from Kolkata to Agartala (via Guwahati) of 38 hours and 1500 km to 15 hours and 500 kms. Maitree Express is already running between Kolkata and Dhaka which can be extended to Agartala.
Dr Jitendra Singh said that cultural linkages with Bangladesh are very important. He said that tourism, trade and cultural exchange between the two countries should be promoted.