PM opens ‘Padma Bridge Rail Link Construction Project’

MAWA, Munshiganj, Oct 14, 2018 : Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina here today inaugurated the groundbreaking work of the ‘Padma Bridge Rail Link Construction Project’ unveiling a new horizon in the country’s rail sector development.

The prime minister opened the groundbreaking work of the rail link between Dhaka and Jashore under the ‘Padma Bridge Rail Link Construction Project on the Mawa side of the bridge by unveiling its plaque.

Railways Minister Md Mazibul Haque briefed the prime minister about the model of the rail link project.

Ministers, PM’s advisers, parliament members, the chief of army staff, senior Awami League leaders, the project director of the Padma bridge scheme, high civil and military officials were present on the occasion.

A munajat was offered seeking continued peace, progress and development of the country as well as the eternal peace of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and other martyrs of the August 15 carnage.

According to Railways Ministry sources, the first phase of the ‘Padma Bridge Rail Link Construction Project’ will establish rail link between Mawa and Bhanga via Janjira and Shibchar through the Padma Multipurpose Bridge.

It will connect Dhaka, Narayanganj, Munshiganj, Shariatpur, Madaripur, Faridpur, Gopalganj, Narail and Jashore.

The Chinese government-nominated contractor China Railway Group Limited is implementing the project under China G2G system.

A loan agreement was signed with Chinese Exim Bank for $2667.94 million in this regard.

Under the project, 23 km ballast-less elevated viaduct rail line will be constructed.

On the elevated viaduct, two platforms, one mainline and two loop lines will be constructed along with installation of elevators.

The Engineering Corps of Bangladesh Army, the symbol of confidence of the country, and Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) are performing responsibilities as its consultants.

Earlier, upon her arrival at Mawa at about 11 am from Dhaka by an Air Force helicopter, the prime minister first unveiled a name plaque of the Padma Bridge and 60 percent progress work of the 6.15-kilometer bridge on the Mawa side.

She also inaugurated the 1300 meter permanent river bank protection work in Mawa-Kandipara-Jasholdia area.

The estimated cost of the Padma Bridge Project is Taka 30,193.39 crore and of the amount, Tk 12,972.46-crore has so far been spent.

Officials informed the premier that the implementation work of the bridge is going on satisfactorily and its overall progress is 60 percent and physical progress of the main bridge is 70 percent.

With the setting up the fifth span, they said, 750-meter of the main
structure of the bridge has become visible. The bridge is being constructed with most modern technologies and materials.

The bridge is being built with steel and concrete structures and vehicles will ply through its upper deck and train will run through the lower deck, the officials said.

With the completion of the bridge, they said, 19 southern districts will be directly connected with Dhaka by road and rail.

The prime minister also visited the expressway construction project of Dhaka (Jatrabari)-Mawa and Pachchar-Bhanga Highway.The project was approved by the ECNEC on May 3 in 2016.

The 51-km highway was upgraded to the four lanes from two lanes as per a modern traffic design, and Tk 6,852.29-crore was spent for implementing the scheme. There is a 5.5-meter width separate lane on both sides of the highway for slow-moving vehicles and a five-meter width median in the middle of the highway.

And arrangements have been made for construction of metro rail and elevated expressway by using this median.

Besides, there are 54 culverts, 20 underpasses, four big bridges, 25 small bridges, five flyovers, two interchanges and four railway overpasses.

Due to addition of these facilities, the highway has been turned into an expressway.

The prime minister later addressed a “Sudhi Samabesh” (civic rally) at Mawa Golchattar adjacent to Mawa Toll Plaza.

In the afternoon, the prime minister will visit the Janzira side of the
Padma Bridge and first unveil the plaque of the progress work of the bridge there.

She will later inaugurate the construction work of the rail link (Janzira side).

Sheikh Hasina, also the Awami League president, will then go to Shibchar and address a public meeting to be organized by her party at Iliyas Ahmed Chowdhury Ferry Ghat at Kathalbari in Shibchar upazila.