The Bangladesh-India interstate passenger train will not be launched on March 26. Though Indian Railways has offered to introduce trains, the train is not being launched now as the country has not yet issued tourist visas to Bangladeshis by road. The decision was taken at an inter-ministerial meeting at the Railway Ministry on Sunday.
Additional Director General (Operations) of Bangladesh Railway Sardar Shahadat Ali informed this. He said the decision to launch the train was not taken at the inter-ministerial meeting. India has not yet started issuing tourist visas to road and rail passengers. It has been decided to contact India through the Ministry of External Affairs to know when the visa will be issued. The train will start when the visa is issued.
Three passenger trains run between Bangladesh and India. The ‘Maitri Express’ was launched in 2008 on the Dhaka-Kolkata route. ‘Bandhan Express’ runs on the Khulna-Kolkata route. ‘Mitali Express’ on Dhaka-Jalpaiguri route. Although the Mitali Express was inaugurated on March 26, 2020, in the presence of the Prime Ministers of the two countries, the train never carried passengers because of the corona. The ‘Maitri’ and ‘Bandhan’ movements have also been suspended since March 15, 2020, due to the Corona epidemic.
Railway Secretary Director General of Railways DN Majumder and senior officials of various ministries were present at the inter-ministerial meeting chaired by Humayun Kabir.