Dhaka-Kolkata Train Service To Start In Three Months

DHAKA, Jan 18 (Bernama) — The Bangladeshi caretaker government Communications Adviser Maj Gen (retd) Ghulam Quader has said the Dhaka-Kolkata train service will certainly start within three months, China’s Xinhua news agency said, quoting a local newspaper report.

“We are ready, India is also ready, all preparations are complete now,” Quader was quoted Friday by local newspaper The Daily Star as saying.

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The much-awaited train service, scheduled to start late last year, stumbled due to India’s demand for barbed-wire fencing on the no-man’s land near Chuadanga border.

Quader, who took over the communications ministry two days ago, said Thursday the government has already sent documents of a treaty to New Delhi. “The service will start immediately after India signs it and sends it back to us,” he said.

On the barbed-wire fencing, Quader, also the adviser of Housing and Public Works Ministry, said: “We have objected to the barbed- wire fencing. They have their reasons, we have ours. The new proposal we sent does not have this barbed-wire fencing provision. ” The matter will be discussed at the state level, he said.

Another major point of disagreement over how many days a week the trains will run has also been solved, said the adviser.

“We had earlier said five to six days a week but they said only one day for administrative reasons. Now they are saying they do not have any objection. The service can be three to four days a week or as many days needed,” Quader said.

“Once the service is up and running, people from Bangladesh and India will benefit socially, culturally and economically,” he added.

The train service between Dhaka and Kolkata was suspended during the India-Pakistan war in 1965 when Bangladesh was the eastern wing of Pakistan.