Green light to double rail on oldest route - 135-year-old Kiul-Sahebganj loop section will finally get twin railway lines

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By GAUTAM SARKAR
  • Published 21.09.10
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Bhagalpur, Sept. 20: After several demands and letters of appeal the 135-year-old Kiul-Sahibganj loop section has finally got the green signal to convert into double tracks.

After getting a green signal from the railway board, the Malda division of eastern railway (under whose jurisdiction this section falls) has started works to lay double tracks on the 111-km-long stretch of Bhagalpur to Sahibganj (falling under Jharkhand).

Sources in the railways said that the work would be completed in four phases and would require Rs 200 crore. The loop section is considered to be one of oldest railway lines in the country.

The British installed it in 1875 to connect Delhi with Calcutta via eastern parts of Bihar.

Presently 21 pairs of trains regularly ply on this single track, which results in late running of trains.

“This section is not only the oldest but it has the capacity to generate huge revenue for the railways. Moreover, doubling of tracks would help trains ply on scheduled time,” said Lakhanlal Prasad, a daily passenger on this route.

He said that presently a train takes four to five hours from Bhagalpur to Sahebganj but after doubling the tracks the train would take hardly two hours to reach the same place.

After the construction of Farakka Barrage in Bengal in the 70s, the loop section had to face an increase in train movement.

Local passengers from Bhagalpur to Sahibganj have demanded doubling of tracks time and again.

Even former state chief minister Bhagwat Jha Azad to the present political leaders have put the issue on their poll manifesto during elections but the demand was never paid a heed.

Malda division railway manager (DRM) M.K. Mathur said that keeping in view the demand of local passengers, the railway had initiated the doubling of tracks.

He also said that for doubling of tracks, railway would not have to go through the land acquisition process.

The first phase of laying the tracks has started in Tinpahar-Sahibganj route (32km).

The second phase would start from Sahebganj-Pirpainty (28km).

Third phase from Pirpainty-Kahalgaon (21km) and the fourth phase would be completed from Kahalgaon-Bhagalpur (30km). The completion would help all.