First Nepal-India Broad Gauge Railway line likely in December 2018

Also, Raxual Railway Station in the Samastipur Division/ECR in Bihar to be connected with Nepal’s Kathmandu, thanks to new railway project that is coming up!

KHATMANDU: Nepal plans to operate its first ever broad-gauge passenger railway service from Janakpur town to Indian border town Jayanagar in Bihar starting December, a senior Nepalese rail official has said here.

This is a section of 69 km Nepal-India cross border railway line from Jayanagar to Nepal’s southeastern region. The other five cross-border railway lines between the two neighbours are either being constructed or are on the drawing board, Xinhua news agency reported.

There was earlier a narrow gauge Janakpur-Jaynagar line in the past but that service came to a halt around five years ago after renovation and upgrading works began.

Prakash Bhakta Upadhyay, senior divisional engineer at Nepal’s Department of Railway (DoR) told Xinhua on Tuesday that they planned to take rail carriages on a lease from India shortly to start the operations.

Under the wet lease, Nepal will hire Indian crew members to operate the service as the Himalayan country does not have necessary human resources to operate the broad gauge railway service, according to DoR.

Bihar’s Raxual to be connected with Nepal’s Kathmandu thanks to new railway project

Nepal and India have agreed to seal an agreement for preliminary engineering cum traffic survey for building a rail link that will connect Raxual in Bihar to the Nepalese capital, weeks after Nepal and China agreed on a feasibility study for a railway line connecting Tibet with the Himalayan nation.

Nepal and India had agreed to construct railway line linking Raxaul with Kathmandu during Prime Minister K P Oli Sharma’s visit to India.

Apart from Raxaul-Kathmandu railway line, India has already started building five cross border railway lines between Nepal and India. One line from Jayanagar to Janakpur-Kurtha will be completed within a year.

Senior government officials from Nepal and India on Monday agreed to seal the Memorandum of Understanding of the Raxaul-Kathmandu rail line as soon as possible.

India has despatched the text of the MoU of Raxaul-Kathmandu railway line.

During the meeting both sides agreed to put concerted efforts and resolve all issues expeditiously, to complete the railway lines from Jayanagar to Janakpur-Kurtha and from Jogbani to Biratnagar Customs Yard by the October 2018 time line, the Kathmandu Post reported.

Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport (MoPIT) Joint Secretary Keshab Kumar Sharma and India’s Ministry of External Affairs Joint Secretary (DPA-III) Namgya Khampa took part in the meeting.

The meeting also agreed to take forward work in the remaining stretches of the two rail projects from Kurtha-Bijalpura-Bardibas and from Biratnagar Customs Yard-Biratnagar sections on priority, according to the statement.

The meeting appreciated the work undertaken in the final location survey (FLS) for the remaining three rail links, New Jalpaiguri-Kakarbhitta, Nautanwa-Bhairahawa, and Nepalgunj Road-Nepalgunj which are to be implemented under Phase-II.

An Indian team has conducted the first round of survey for the railway.

“The Nepali side has conveyed its deep appreciation for the support of Government of India in the development of the India-Nepal cross border rail links, which would enhance people-to-people linkages between the two countries and promote economic growth and development in the region.

“The India side expressed its appreciation for the government of Nepal’s commitment to expeditiously resolve all the outstanding issues including making available remaining land required for completion of the ongoing rail link projects,” the statement said.

China and Nepal have agreed to build a strategic railway link connecting Tibet with Kathmandu, which Nepalese Prime Minister Oli sees as an alternative trade route for supply of commodities to the landlocked Himalayan nation.

The detailed project planning report (DPR) of the Kerung-Kathmandu rail line would be completed in one-and-a-half years or so.

China has been building rail, road and air links in the remote Tibet spending billions of dollars.

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