Calcutta, Sept. 11: Bankura will come about 50 km closer to the city in a couple of years.
A rail track will by then connect the district town with Mosagram on the Howrah-Burdwan chord line, reducing the earlier 231-km trip to Howrah ' via Kharagpur ' to about 185 km.
“We plan to complete the Bankura-Damodar River Valley project by 2008. The work is progressing well,” said Animesh Ganguly, the chief administrative officer (construction) of South-Eastern Railway.
The project is covering 117 km, of which work on 41 km ' from Bankura to Sonamukhi 'has been completed.
“The trial run has been successful and we are awaiting clearance from the commissioner of railway safety,” Ganguly said. The inspection is scheduled for tomorrow.
Ganguly said the stretch between Sonamukhi and Rainagar would be completed by next year. “Only one bridge remains to be built and it will be over soon.”
Work on the 20 km between Rainagar and Mosagram would begin this year. It involves the construction of a bridge across the Damodar.
The laying of the new line has been an old demand of people from the region. Till the mid-1990s, narrow gauge trains operated between Bankura and Rainagar. “There is no rail connectivity for the people now, which is a major inconvenience,” said a railway.
Another line will connect Bowaichandi with Khana junction (22 km away) on Eastern Railway’s Burdwan-Adra section, providing an alternative to Howrah-bound passengers from Durgapur and Asansol.