Corona couldn’t hamper launching Jamuna Railbridge construction

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Corona couldn’t hamper launching Jamuna Railbridge construction

By Sobnom Sohorat

Representatives of Japan Internal Cooperation Agency (JICA) has said construction work of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Railway Bridge will not delayed due to the outbreak of Corona Virus across East Asia.

The Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is expected to launch the ground breaking ceremony of the rail bridge work on March 14.

“March 14 has been fixed as the tentative date for laying the foundation stone of the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Railway Bridge (Dual-gauge) over the Jamuna River, Railways Minister Nurul Islam Sujan on Wednesday said.

A joint venture of the Obayashi Corporation, TOA Corporation and JFE would construct the eastern part of the bridge at the cost of Tk 6,801 crore while another joint venture of the IHI and SMCC companies will work on the western part involving Tk 6,148 crore, officials said.

The proposed Bangabandhu Railway Bridge is a lifeline connecting the north-western part with the eastern part of Bangladesh. The present project is undertaken by Bangladesh Railway (BR), Ministry of Railways, Government of Bangladesh (GoB), a project profile prepared by JICA said .

The project envisages the construction of a Railway bridge with provision for a Dual gauge double track which will run 300 meters up stream and parallel to the exiting Bangabandhu Bridge over the river Jamuna. The proposed project is funded by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the project comprises of constructing of the 4.8 Km long bridge across the river Jamuna and construction of about 6.5 Km long approach rail track along with the computer based interlocking signalling system, the report added.

A feasibility study of this project was conducted during 2013-2014 by ADB and a Supplemental Survey of this project was conducted by JICA in 2015.

The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) Tuesday approved a total of eight projects involving Taka 10,468.24 crore including a first revised project for constructing Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Railway Bridge over River Jamuna with an additional cost of Taka 7,046.88 crore.

With the latest revision, the total cost for the project reached Taka 16,780.95 crore where the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) will provide Taka 12,149.19 crore.

The reason behind the delay and the increased cost would be known after the revised DPP was placed before the Ecnec, Finance Minister said.

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