New railway connectivity to positively impact Bangladesh and India: FS Shringla
India is also looking at exporting the surplus hydropower potential of the North East to Bangladesh and Myanmar
Connectivity between Bangladesh and India will directly and positively impact both the North East and Bangladesh, India’s Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla has said. He highlighted that four of the six pre-1965 rail links between the two neighbors have been made operational, and work is underway on the remaining two.
The rail link between Haldibari in West Bengal and Chilahati in Bangladesh, which is under construction, will revive the old Siliguri-Sealdah rail route through Bangladesh, the Dhaka Tribune quoted Shringla saying. He said the new railway link between Akhaura in Bangladesh and Agartala and Tripura is under construction.
Delivering the keynote address at a webinar on "Self-Reliant India: Reimagining the North East India in terms of Employment and Skill” recently, the Foreign Secretary said the infrastructure of Land Customs Stations is also being upgraded to enable smooth cross-border movement of goods and people.
The report said Shringla pointed out the potential of mutually beneficial resources and of generating a common economic space in areas like energy. He said Bangladesh imports 1160 MW of power through adjoining states in India. Shringla revealed that India is also looking at exporting the surplus hydropower potential of the North East to Bangladesh and Myanmar. Moreover, there has been considerable augmentation of the inland water transport that links the North East to Bangladesh.
According to the Dhaka Tribune report, 20 port townships are planned along the Brahmaputra and Barak river systems to enhance inland water connectivity. The report says this could galvanize multimodal linkages in the entire region. Shringla highlighted the first container of goods that was moved recently from Kolkata to Agartala, via the newly-established India-Bangladesh agreement permitting the use of Chittagong port for India to transport goods to and from North East India.