Dohazari-Cox’s Bazar rail track project cleared

Dohazari-Cox’s Bazar rail track project cleared

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Dhaka – The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) on Tuesday approved Dohazari-Ramu-Cox’s Bazar and Ramu to Gundum single line dual gauge track construction project(revised) with Tk 18,034.48 crore in a bid to introduce railway communication in the tourist city of Cox’s Bazar, unb news agency reported.
The approval came from the 27th Ecnec meeting of the current fiscal year held at the NEC conference room with Ecnec chairperson and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.Briefing reporters after the meeting, Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal said a total of eight projects were approved today with an overall outlay of Tk 18,657.27 crore.
“Of the total project cost, Tk 5,495.39 crore will come from the national exchequer, Tk 46.47 crore from the organisation’s own fund while Tk 13,115.41 crore from project assistance.”
Of the approved eight projects, six are new while two are revised ones.
The Planning Minister said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at the meeting asked the authorities concerned to implement Dohazari-Ramu-Cox’s Bazar railway track project as a ‘Fast Track’ one.
He said the Prime Minister also asked the authorities concerned to complete the Dohazari-Ramu-Cox’s Bazar portion of the railway track project within the next three years.
He said the countrywide railway track coverage is now 2,877 kilometers and it would increase gradually since it is the easier and cheaper mode of transport.
The Planning Minister said Bangladesh Railway will implement the first revision of the Dohazari-Ramu-Cox’s Bazar and Ramu to Gundum single line dual gauge track construction project by June 2022.
Of the total project cost of Tk 18,034.48 crore, he said that Tk 4,919.07 crore will come from the national exchequer while Tk 13,115.41 crore as project assistance from the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
He said the project will go through Chandanaish, Satkania and Lohagara upazilas of Chittagong district, Chakoria, Cox’s Bazar Sadar, Ramu and Ukhia upazilas under Cox’s Bazar district and Gundum upazila of Bandarban district.
Earlier on July 6, 2010, Ecnec approved the project for constructing single-line meter-gauge railway track from Dohazari in Chittagong to Cox’s Bazar via Ramu and Ramu to Gundum along Myanmar border, involving Tk 1,852.35 crore.
But, the implementation of the project works got delayed due to the uncertainty of funds from the development partners. At the Ecnec meeting on September 9, 2014, directives were given to turn the single line track to dual gauge from meter gauge from Dohazari-Ramu-Cox’s Bazar and Ramu-Gundum.
A Planning Commission official said the original project was taken to construct a 127.66-km single-line meter-gauge railway track, but in the revision, a dual-gauge track will be constructed, resulting in the huge Tk 16,182.13 crore hike in the project cost.
Under the first revision, a 100.83-km single-line dual-gauge track will be constructed from Dohazari to Cox’s Bazar via Ramu while another 28.752-km single-line dual-gauge track from Ramu to Gundum near Myanmar border.
The project also aims to establish link with Trans Asian Railway Corridor and ensuring development of the tourism facilities of the tourist city Cox’s Bazar through developing rail communication system.
The other projects approved at the meeting are: Rehabilitation of some 100-meter gauge passenger carriages for Bangladesh Railway with Tk 59.30 crore, Road extension and development from Jatrabari section to Trimukhi under Dhaka South City Corporation with Tk 154.89 crore, Connecting road from Bortakia (Abutorab) to Mirsarai economic zone with Tk 123.57 crore, widening of Sadullapur-Pirganj-Nababganj district highway widening with Tk 90.19 crore.
Besides, construction of 219.456-meter long Shahbazpur Bridge and rehabilitation of the existing bridge at the 93rd kilometer on Dhaka-Sylhet highway with Tk 67.90 crore, Kashimpur pump house rehabilitation under Monu River irrigation project with Tk 84.16 crore and construction of Multi channel slipway house, 3rd revised, with Tk 42.78 crore.
Ministers and State Ministers concerned attended the meeting.

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