May 26, 2024, 1:38 am

Bangabandhu Railway Bridge to open a new horizon in northern economy

  • Update Time : Sunday, April 28, 2024
  • 41 Time View
Photo: Collected

Ashraful Islam Joy with Sirajul Islam Shishir:

The people of northern region including Sirajganj, Pabna and Bogura district have now started to see the ray of hope over opening the door of economic development with the commencement of a new horizon in the business and communication sector as the construction of Bangabandhu Railway Bridge is progressing fast.

Meanwhile, about 87 percent of the project works have been done, while rest is expected to be completed within short time.

“If the project of Bangabandhu Railway Bridge is implemented in schedule time, it will bring a historical revolution in the industrial and economic sector of the northern region. The transportation of agricultural and industrial goods between northern region and other parts of the country will be easier compared to the previous time as well as the transportation costs will be reduced, which will bring positive impacts in the economic sector and relief in the social life,” said Mir Mohammad Mahbubur Rahman, Deputy Commissioner (DC) in Sirajganj.

The Deputy Commissioner also said, “Freight trains coming from abroad will be able to travel directly via capital city Dhaka. It will reduce the pressure on the Bangabandhu Jamuna Multipurpose Bridge and the highway along with the reduction of import and export costs. Similarly, the risk of developing cracks at different points on the Bangabandhu Jamuna Multipurpose Bridge will come to reduce. It will help to protect the bridge along with refrain from collapse or any kind of damages and destructions.”

Dr. Jannat Ara Talukder Henry, Parliament Member of Sirajganj-2 Constituency told The Daily Sky that, “Bangabandhu Railway Bridge is a gift of the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for the people of northern region. After a long cherished demand, we are going to get the longest Railway Bridge on the Jamuna river. When the bridge will be inaugurated, there will be no more train schedule collapse and commuter sufferings.”

“On the other hand, among other places, people of Sirajganj will be highly benefited after inauguration of Bangabandhu Railway Bridge as it is termed as gateway of the northern region. Besides, the government has already started establishing Sirajganj Economic Zone (SEZ) and BSCIC Industrial Park at the western side of the Bridge with the view to expand trade and commerce in the area. After implementation of the projects, about 1 million people of the region will get employment facilities. Domestic and foreign industrial entrepreneurs have already shown interest in setting factories in the region. I have to urge the rich and capable people of the country and abroad to set up large scale of industries in the region, as per their needs,” she added.

Tanvirul Islam, Chief Engineer of Bangabandhu Railway Bridge Project said, “This dual-gauge double-track bridge will be the largest Railway Bridge in the country. It will facilitate and improve the railway connectivity among the capital, north and western parts of the country. Apart from this, the railway department authorities believe that, this bridge will also help in reducing schedule disruptions of trains and sufferings of the commuters.”

“Not only that, if the Bangabandhu Railway Bridge is launched, it will be easy to transport goods from the industrial zone to any country of the world using railways, roads and highways,” he added.

Local businessmen believe that, the transportation of various goods including agricultural products produced in the 16 districts of the northern region will be easier than other times after inauguration of the Railway Bridge. There is immense potential of changing the fate of people in North Bengal.

Al Fattah Md. Masudur Rahman, Director of the Project (PD) said, “The country’s largest Railway Bridge is now being built on the Jamuna river adding both the district Sirajganj and Tangail. The 4.8 km Bangabandhu Railway Bridge is being constructed on 300 meters upstream of the Bangabandhu Bridge. After the completion of this dual gauge double track bridge, at least 88 trains will be able to run throughout the bridge at a speed of 120 km per day.”

Golam Abu Yusuf Surju, President of Sirajganj Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) told The Daily Sky that, “The long-awaited Railway Bridge is going to be installed adjacent of the Jamuna Multipurpose Bridge. It will help to establish business and economic hub in the northern region including Bogura.”

JICA is implementing the railway bridge project with the joint funding of Bangladesh and Japan at a cost of Tk 16,780 crore. The construction of the bridge is scheduled to be completed by August of this year. After opening of the Bangabandhu Bridge in 1998, the railway link of the north-western part of the country was established via Dhaka. However, in 2008, due to cracks at different points of the Bangabandhu Bridge, the speed of the train was made restricted. At present, per day about 38 trains are crossing the bridge at a speed of 20 km per hour, causing loss of time and increasing inconvenience to the passengers for continuous schedule disruptions. To resolve the problem, the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina laid foundation stone for construction of the Bangabandhu Railway Bridge on November 29 in 2020.

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