Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hasina today launched a new passenger train service between Kolkata and Khulna, an industrial town in southwestern Bangladesh. Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was present at the railway station in Kolkata to flag off the first train. The new train will not travel on a new route, but reviving a historic one that fell into disuse after the partition.
At the launch, where the two premiers joined in through video conferencing, PM Modi said the “centuries-old historic bond between the people of India, especially from West Bengal, and Bangladesh got a fresh boost”. Speaking in Bengali, he added, “I congratulate the people of the two countries on this auspicious occasion. Our ties of friendship got more strengthened today.”
“Today is a great day for relations between the two countries… This train service is a dream come true for people on both sides of the border,” Sheikh Hasina said.
The Maitree Express between Dhaka and Kolkata, which has been running since 2008, is popular. The ‘Bandhan Express’, which is expected to ease the pressure on Maitree Express, will operate twice a week and cover a distance of 177 km in four-and-a-half hours.
“With these links, and today’s projects, we have taken a few more steps in the right direction,” the Prime Minister said. Read More…
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