On November 1, 2023, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina jointly inaugurated three remarkable development projects aimed at bolstering connectivity and energy security between the two nations. In this article, we’ll explore these projects and understand their significance for both countries.
Akhaura–Agartala Cross-Border Rail Link
India and Bangladesh have taken a significant step towards strengthening their ties with the inauguration of the Akhaura–Agartala Cross-Border Rail Link. This rail link connects Agartala in the Indian state of Tripura with Akhaura in Bangladesh. Here’s what you need to know:
- This 12.24 Km rail link consists of a 6.78 Km dual-gauge rail line in Bangladesh and 5.46 Km in Tripura.
- Travel time between Agartala and Kolkata via Dhaka will be reduced from 31 hours to just 10 hours, making journeys faster and more efficient.
- The project was entirely funded by the Indian government, providing a grant assistance of Rs 392.52 crore to Bangladesh.
- This rail link is not just about transportation; it’s about promoting tourism, cross-border trade, and people-to-people exchanges. It’s a bridge of opportunities and friendships.
Akhaura–Agartala Cross-Border Rail Link in a Nutshell
|Project Name||Akhaura–Agartala Cross-Border Rail Link|
|Length of Rail Link||12.24 Km|
|Dual-Gauge Rail Line (Bangladesh)||6.78 Km|
|Dual-Gauge Rail Line (Tripura)||5.46 Km|
|Travel Time Reduction||From 31 hours to 10 hours|
|Funding Source||Indian Government (Rs 392.52 crore)|
|Significance||Promotes tourism, trade, and people-to-people exchanges|
Khulna–Mongla Port Rail Line
The Khulna–Mongla Port Rail Line is a game-changer for Bangladesh. It’s a 65 Km broad gauge rail route that connects the Mongla Port to the rail network in Khulna. Let’s dive into the details:
- The project integrates the Mongla Port, Bangladesh’s second-largest port, with the broader-gauge railway network.
- A vital part of the project, the Rupsha Bridge (5.2 Km long), was completed in June 2022, connecting central and northern Bangladesh to the Indian border in West Bengal.
- This rail line will enhance Bangladesh’s connectivity with its neighbors – India, Nepal, and Bhutan. It will connect Mongla Port and Siliguri in India, fostering trade and regional cooperation.
- The project is part of India’s Line of Credit to Bangladesh, strengthening the bonds of friendship and cooperation.
Khulna–Mongla Port Rail Line in a Nutshell
|Project Name||Khulna–Mongla Port Rail Line|
|Rail Line Length||65 Km|
|Rupsha Bridge Length||5.2 Km|
|Integration||Connects Mongla Port to Khulna’s rail network|
|Regional Connectivity||Connects Mongla Port to Siliguri in India, fostering trade and regional cooperation|
|Funding Source||Part of India’s Line of Credit to Bangladesh|
Unit-II of the Maitree Super Thermal Power Plant
The Maitree Super Thermal Power Plant is a symbol of India and Bangladesh’s collaboration in the energy sector. With the recent inauguration of Unit II, this project is lighting the way for a better future:
- The Maitree Super Thermal Power Project is a 1320 MW (2×660) Super Thermal Power Plant in Khulna division, Bangladesh, financed under India’s Concessional Financing Scheme.
- It’s a joint venture between India’s NTPC Limited and Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB).
- The operationalization of this power plant enhances energy security in Bangladesh, promoting development and prosperity.
Maitree Super Thermal Power Plant in a Nutshell
|Project Name||Unit-II of Maitree Super Thermal Power Plant|
|Power Plant Capacity||1320 MW (2×660 MW)|
|Location||Khulna division, Bangladesh|
|Partnerships||Joint venture between NTPC Limited (India) and Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB)|
|Financing||India’s Concessional Financing Scheme|
|Impact||Enhances energy security in Bangladesh, promoting development and prosperity|
Prime Minister @narendramodi and Prime Minister of Bangladesh, H.E. Sheikh Hasina jointly inaugurate:— PIB India (@PIB_India) November 1, 2023
🔹Akhaura (Bangladesh) – Agartala (India) rail link
🔹Khulna-Mongla Port rail line
🔹Unit 2 of Maitree Super Thermal Power Plant in
Rampal, Bangladesh pic.twitter.com/G9Mzd7gv6K
The inauguration of these projects is not just about infrastructure; it’s about building stronger relationships, boosting trade, and creating opportunities for both India and Bangladesh. As these nations move forward hand in hand, their future looks brighter and more interconnected.
- Akhaura–Agartala Cross-Border Rail Link connects Agartala in India with Akhaura in Bangladesh, reducing travel time.
- Khulna–Mongla Port Rail Line integrates the Mongla Port with the broader-gauge railway network, enhancing connectivity with India and neighboring countries.
- Unit II of the Maitree Super Thermal Power Plant strengthens energy security in Bangladesh through cooperation with India.