KATHMANDU: The government has carried out technical preparation for the operation of 34-km-long Kurtha-Jaynagar Railway giving an impetus for the operation of the railway service at the earliest.
The Nepal Railway Company Limited said that the physical infrastructures of the railway would be handed over to Nepal by the Konkan Railway Corporation Limited in India very soon.
Company’s General Manager Guru Bhattarai shared that although the formal inauguration of the railway service was planned later at prime ministerial level, they were going to assume the responsibility of operating the railway service thank links Kurtha in Nepal with Jaynagar in India.
The Company coordinated with the Indian company to procure 26 technical staffs to operate the railway. GM Bhattarai said, “The technical team will include railway driver, station master, power manage, senior traffic manager among others.”
Today’s meeting of Council of Ministers in Nepal would dwell and decide regarding the agreement to be signed with India for inaugural of the railway that is set up by the Indian Railways’ Integral Coach Factory and built with India’s technical and financial assistance.
The railway officials and technical staffs were also standby for the operation of the railway service. The Armed Police Force is likely to guard the train station to ensure safety and security for the passengers and railway officials.
According to the Indian Embassy in Nepal, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to participate in the inaugural of railway service.
Bhattarai informed that it was not sure whether the Indian Prime Minister would appear physically or virtually for the inaugural. “The appropriate date for the inaugural would be decided once the both Prime Ministers manage time for the same.
“Fixation of fare price rate and ticketing has been already decided,” said Bhattarai. The company has proposed a fair fare rate with the related Ministry as well.
Travelling 35 kilometers costs Rs 75, according to the fare price list.
“Travelling on a deluxe rail costs five times more than normal,” he explained. The cabinet meeting today is expected to ease the service operation of the railway.
“The company would soon provide a week-long training session to Nepali workers,” said Bhattarai, adding that those workers having prior experience in the railway sector would be prioritized. “Regular operation will take place in two to three weeks,” he said.
The government has a plan to connect the railway to Bardibas where the proposed East-West railway would meet. The government of Nepal brought two DEMU trains four months ago, each of which can accommodate from 1,200 to 1,300 passengers, according to the Department of Railway.
In 1984 BS during Rana regime, there had been a railway service available from Raxaul in India to Amlekhganj in Nepal and Jayanagar-Janakpur railway service was in operation until 1994 BS.
After a halt of the service for long, resumption of the railway service has taken a pace under the government’s goals of ‘Prosperous Nepal, Happy Nepalis’.
Construction of the railway tracks from Kurtha to Jayanagar completed last year. Construction of the project from Kurtha to Bijalpura has reached its final stage, which would be operational soon, said the Department. (Sanchita Ghimire/RSS)