Dhaka starts direct trial bus service to Darjeeling & Gangtok


Dhaka starts direct trial bus service to Darjeeling & Gangtok
The trial run of direct bus services on Dhaka-Gangtok and Dhaka-Darjeeling routes via Siliguri kicked off last night aiming to boost cross-border passenger services.
The run was inaugurated by Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation Chairman Ehsan Elahi.
A team including 18 government officials, led by Joint Secretary (toll and axle) Shafiqul Karim of road transport and highway division, left Gabtoli Bus Terminal in two buses around 8:15pm. Five Indian officials will join them at Siliguri.
They will return home on December 16 after visiting Darjeeling and Gangtok, said Shafiqul before the journey.
The run was scheduled yesterday morning, but delayed as the government did not issue necessary orders on time.
A large number of holidaymakers seek direct bus services to the two popular tourist destinations. Besides, many Bangladeshi parents send their children to boarding schools in Darjeeling, said officials.
The service will ease their journey to the places, they added.
Suvenker Ghosh Rakesh, managing director of Shyamoli NR Travels that provided the officials with the buses, said they were ready to operate commercially on the routes if the authorities approve after the trial run.
Darjeeling via Siliguri is around 450km and Gangtok about 500km away from Dhaka.
Mahbub Hossain Sumon, managing director of Touch Creation Ltd, a travel agency, said, “This definitely is a great initiative.”
In November, India lifted a ban that restricted foreigners from entering Gangtok. The bus service will definitely be a great help to the visitors now, he said.
He however, said heavy buses would not be able to operate on the narrow and zigzag roads between Siliguri and Darjeeling.
Currently, buses operate on five cross-border routes between Bangladesh and India -- Dhaka-Kolkata-Dhaka, Dhaka-Agartala-Dhaka, Dhaka-Sylhet-Shillong-Guwahati-Dhaka, Agartala-Dhaka-Kolkata-Agartala and Dhaka-Khulna-Kolkata-Dhaka.

https://www.thedailystar.net/
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The trial run of direct bus services on Dhaka-Gangtok and Dhaka-Darjeeling routes via Siliguri kicked off last night aiming to boost cross-border passenger services. The run was inaugurated by Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation Chairman Ehsan Elahi.

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