Although one year has passed, the ‘Bandhan Express’ running between Bangladesh and India has been incurring a loss of around TK 6 lakh on each trip for not having sufficient number of passengers.
The train has a total of 456 seats in 10 coaches but only some 100-120 passengers travel to India from Khulna on each trip, according to sources at the railways station.The ‘Bandhan Express’ was formally started its journey on November 16, 2017 in a bid to ease communication between the two neighbouring countries.
The train is fully air conditioned and the fare of cabin is Tk 2000 while chair Tk 1500 including travel taxes. But a traveller has to spend only Tk 600 to visit Kolkata from Khulna via Benapole Check Post, according to passengers.Due to the high price of its tickets, the train has failed to attract passengers, they added.
The train runs two days a week and takes around four and half hours to reach Kolkata from Khulna although the distance is only 177 kilometres. In last one year, a total 5,520 Bangladeshi passengers made journey to Kolkata by the train. On December 6, the train carried only 90 passengers, said Khulna Station Master Manik Chandra Sarker.
“However, the train requires some 350 litre of oil for the journey which costs around Tk 22,750,” he added.From that trip, the authorities have collected only TK 1.95 lakh which was supposed to be Tk 8 lakh, the station master said adding that the railways authority incurred around Tk 6 lakh loss from that trip.