India on Monday handed over 10 broad-gauge (BG) locomotives to Bangladesh, aiming to help handle the increasing volume of passenger and freight train operations in the neighbouring country.
The locomotives were flagged off virtually by External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Railways Minister Piyush Goyal and were received by Bangladesh’s Foreign Minister A K Abdul Momen and Railway Minister Nurul Islam Sujan.
The 10 locomotives handed over on Monday are designed for a speed of 120 mph, and are suitable for hauling freight and passenger trains.
The Indian Railways has modified them to suit the maximum height restrictions in Bangladesh.
Jaishankar said, “The pandemic has also forced us to come up with innovative solutions aimed at minimising disruptions to our supply chain logistics. Thanks to our well-timed efforts, the business communities of the two countries have started utilising freight trains for transporting commodities and raw materials for manufacturing industries. The movement of freight via rail has also ensured that the supply of essential commodities… remains undisrupted… particularly in the holy month of Ramzan…”
Bangladesh Foreign Minister Momen said, “We believe ‘connectivity is productivity’ and our visionary PM (Sheikh Hasina) has been trying to expand our connectivity with our neighbours… Robust railway connectivity is an enabler of economic growth, a platform for uniform development and a catalyst for national integration…” Momen said.
Goyal underscored the significance of railway cooperation in enhancing bilateral trade and in further boosting the economic partnership between the two countries.