All districts of the country would soon be brought under rail network with a view to further developing the country’s communication system, Railways Minister Mujibul Haque told the House yesterday.
Responding to a query from Awami League lawmaker Sukumar Ranjan Ghosh from Munshiganj 1, the minister said as per the directives of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina a plan was being taken to that end.
Mujibul said currently 44 of the 64 districts were covered by the railway network and projects to bring eight more districts soon were under implementation.
He said the eight districts are Bagerhat, Cox’s Bazar, Satkhira, Meherpur, Munshiganj, Madaripur, Shariatpur and Narail. “The remaining districts would be brought under the railway network in phases,” he said.
Replying to another question raised by ruling party lawmaker Nurunnabi Chowdhury, the railways minister said the transportation capacity of Bangladesh Railway had been raised to a greater extent thanks to various development programmes of the present government.
Mujibul said about 65 million passengers travelled by trains in 2013-14, while the number in 2012-13 was about 62.6 million.
The minister said the development activities that the present government has undertaken for the uplift of the railway sector include repair of old rail lines, introduction of new rail lines, purchasing of locomotives and passenger coaches and recruitment of necessary manpower.
The minister said new rail line from Tarakandi to Bangabandhu Bridge East Side has been already introduced, while the operation of the closed Kalukhali-Bhatiapara and Pachuria-Faridpur rail lines have been resumed.
Besides, he said, 96 new trains have been introduced and 26 train routes expanded to provide desired services to the passengers.