Dhubri, Aug. 14: In view of frequent strikes and rail blockades, a delegation of New Moinaguri-Jogighopa Railway Extension Demand Committee will leave for New Delhi on Saturday to meet railway minister Mallikarjun Kharge. It will demand speedy completion of the new and alternative railway line from Dhubri to Abhayapuri connecting Guwahati.
In order to get rid of this situation, there is only one solution completion of this 85-km new railway line without traversing through Srirampur, Gossaigaon, Kokrajhar and New Bongaigaon. It could connect the Northeast with the rest of the country, said Tazmul Haque, joint convener of the committee.
Haque said the delegation would lay emphasis on speedy completion of the alternative railway route and put pressure on the Union railway minister as strikes and blockades on the existing railway route cut off people of the Northeast from the rest of the country.
Haque also said if this alternative railway route was not completed soon, then not only would passengers suffer, it would also hit the foodgrain supply.
Committee sources said the new railway line from New Coochbehar to Golokganj was completed in 2012 but work on the remaining part from Gauripur to Abhayapuri was stalled because of paucity of funds a couple of month ago.
To complete the work, Rs 850 crore was required but the railway ministry has not sanctioned any funds in the last two budgets, sources alleged.
A railway source in Dhubri said the new railway line would ease the suffering of the people, as it would run from New Coochbehar-Golokganj, Gauripur-Bogribari-Bilasipara-Chapor-Bahalpur-Abhayapuri. It will connect the Goalpara-Guwahati railway route.
A railway source in Alipurduar junction said thousands of passengers were stranded on platforms and nearly 80 goods trains carrying essential items had to be stopped at several stations in Bengal during the recent blockades and strikes.