The Indian government has sanctioned Rs.580 crore for the vital rail link, an official said here on Tuesday. It is announced after 6 year of the project finalization. As it expected to complete the work on the 15-km-long rail line to connect Agartala with Akhaura in that country by 2017. Of the 15 km railway track, 10 km falls in the Bangladesh side and the rest in India.
In January 2010, During Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasinas visit to New Delhi, the two countires had agreed to lay the track between Akhaura and Agartala. The 15-km-long Agartala-Akhaura railway route would connect the Indian Railways with the Bangladesh Railways through the North-East which would improve connectivity and boost trade between the two countries.
State Transport Secretary, Samarjit Bhowick said that An amount of Rs 580 crore was sanctioned in the wake of a meeting between the officials of the Prime Ministers office, Ministry of External Affairs and Railways ministry recently, in New Delhi. He said the entire project cost would be borne by the Center and over Rs 1,000 crore was sanctioned for completion of the track in Bangladesh side.
A team comprising technical experts from the both country officials had earlier visited the sites. The team had decided that a 3.7-km-long flyover would be constructed along the five km stretch on the Indian side to save cultivable lands and the present detailed project report (DPR) would be changed, he said. The 1,700 km distance between Agartala and Kolkata through Chicken Neck near Siliguri would be reduced to 350 km if passengers from here could move through the neighbouring country. Currently, India and Bangladesh have four rail links with West Bengal.