Agartala-Akhaura project

Agartala-Akhaura project

News: The Agartala-Akhaura project is expected to boost tourism, trade, and people-to-people exchanges between the two countries.

• The project was virtually inaugurated by PM Modi and Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina.

What is the project?
• In the 12.24-km Agartala-Akhaura railway line, 5.46 kilometres lie on the Indian side in Tripura, and 6.78 km in the Akhaura upa-zilla in Brahmanbaria district of Bangladesh.
• The trial run of a goods train was held on the route on Monday. After the trial run for passenger services is completed, full-fledged train services between Agartala-Akhaura and Agartala-Chittagong (Chattogram) are expected to commence.
• The state has repeatedly expressed the hope that the project will eventually cover Dhaka and Kolkata.

Who is funding the project?
• The entire project cost is being funded by India. The Ministry for Development of North East Region (DoNER) funded the work on the Indian side, and the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) funded the expense for the Bangladesh side as ‘Aid to Bangladesh’.
• The Indian Railway Construction International Limited (IRCON), a Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) under the Indian Railways, did the work on the Indian side, and Texmaco, a private Indian firm, implemented the work on the Bangladesh side.

Significance of project for Tripura
• For a landlocked Tripura, the project is very important as it is going to be gateway for tourism and transport between India and Bangladesh.

Which other trains run between India and Bangladesh?
• Three trains, the Bandhan Express, the Maitree Express and the Mitali Express, run between West Bengal and Bangladesh.

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