Ashwini Vaishnaw Virtually Flags Off Kamakhya-Lokmanya Tilak Express Connecting Agartala to Mumbai: Escalator Inaugurated At Agartala Railway Station

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Posted in Featured, Northeast, Tripura
Abhijit Nath, NET Correspondent, Tripura

Agartala, October 19, 2023: A momentous occasion unfolded today as the Kamakhya-Lokmanya Tilak Express embarked on its maiden journey from Agartala, marking the commencement of an important rail service between Agartala and Mumbai. Chief Minister Prof (Dr) Manik Saha presided over the event at Agartala railway station, while Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnab participated virtually from Guwahati, flagging off the express train service.

In a parallel development, additional demo train services between Agartala and Saram were launched today, alongside the inauguration of an escalator at Agartala railway station.

The ceremony was attended by prominent figures, including Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Pratima Bhowmik, Transport Minister Sushant Chowdhury, and MLA Meenarani Sarkar. The gathering at Agartala Railway Station celebrated the milestone and the improved connectivity it brings to the region.

In his remarks during the video conference, Union Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnab emphasized the significance of North-Eastern development and lauded Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s dedication to the region. Over the past nine years, the Prime Minister has visited North-Eastern states approximately 60 times, accelerating their development.

Vaishnab further highlighted the Ministry of Railways’ commitment to advancing railway communication in the North Eastern region, with a budget allocation of 10,270 crore rupees this year. This commitment has already borne fruit, with the number of trains operating from Tripura rising from two to 17 pairs.

The Minister disclosed ambitious plans to transform 60 North-Eastern stations into world-class facilities, with 37 stations already undergoing development efforts.

In his address, Chief Minister Prof. (Dr.) Manik Saha expressed gratitude for the extension of the Kamakhya-Lokmanya Tilak Express service to Agartala, fulfilling a long-standing demand of the people of Tripura. Additionally, a new demo train service connecting Agartala and Saram has been initiated, as approved by the Ministry of Railways.

The Kamakhya-Lokmanya Tilak Express journey from Agartala to Mumbai is expected to take approximately 55 hours, departing every Thursday at 6 AM and arriving in Mumbai on Saturday afternoon. The return journey from Mumbai to Agartala commences on Sunday morning at 7:30 AM, with an arrival in Agartala on Tuesday evening.

Chief Minister Saha also shared details of ongoing development projects at Udaipur, Dharmanagar, and Kumarghat railway stations, funded at a cost of 16.60 crore rupees under the Amrit Bharat project. A proposal worth Rs 235.45 crore has been submitted to elevate Agartala railway station to international standards. Notably, escalators have been inaugurated at Agartala station, enhancing passenger convenience.

Furthermore, the progress of the Agartala-Akhaura railway, connecting Kolkata through Dhaka, was highlighted as a promising development. Chief Minister Saha also disclosed the Tripura government’s request to extend the services of Tripureshwari Express and Kanchenjunga Express up to Sam, with stops at Udaipur and Bilonia. The expansion of the Lokmanya Tilak-Kamakhya train service is expected to benefit not only the people of the North-Eastern region, including Tripura but also facilitate improved medical, educational, and business connectivity with neighboring Bangladesh.

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