By Amir Hamza
Bangladesh Railway (BR) incurred an operational loss of Tk 170 crore in the last 30 days for suspension of its passenger train due to Covid 19, a BR report said.
The BR earned Tk 1,600 crore in revenue last year by carrying passengers and goods.
Country’s lone state owned railways earned Tk 167.58 crore in the same period of the previous 2019, sources said.
On March 24, the government suspended all passenger train services throughout the country in an effort to prevent the spread of coronavirus. Only freight train services remains operational.
The BR officials said they could not made al freights operational as custom, clearing and banking channels are working partially.
Director General of Bangladesh Railway Shamsuzzaman told that the Business Mirror that although the management trying to make freights service full operational, it could not made possible.
Railways Minister Md Nurul Islam Sujan said the railway has to pay maintenance cost and salaries to its officials and staff despite cut of services.
The minister informed all the trains used to carry around 2.75 lakh passengers every day to fetch Tk 4-5 crore in revenue.
He said a total of 350 freight trains operated in the last 30 days amid the countrywide lockdown to support the government’s relief programmes and added that they don’t have any plan to operate passenger trains at this point.
He said Bangladesh Railway has a total of 364 trains and 26,135 officials and employees.
Of the staff, 418 are first class officers, 752 second class officers, 13,622 third class employees and 11,343 fourth class employees, the minister said.