Indian passengers traveling between Tripura capital Agartala and Kolkata in a special bus service through Bangladesh may soon avail their journey without passports
New Delhi, Jun 6: Indian passengers traveling between Tripura capital Agartala and Kolkata in a special bus service that bisects through Bangladesh may soon avail their journey without passports, Tripura Governor Tathagata Roy has said here. “I have taken up the matter with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and she gave a patient hearing to my request,” Governor Roy told UNI here.
He said the External Affairs Ministry has been also requested to take up with the Bangladesh government for constructing a flyover between Islampur in North Dinajpur district in West Bengal and Tetulia in Bangladesh as that would would ultimately reduce the travel distance the Indian “mainland” and the north eastern region by about 84 km.
“In both the cases, Sushma Swaraj gave a patient hearing to my perspective,” the Governor said. He also said that as regard passport-visa relaxation for Indian passengers between Agartala and Kolkata (because they would be effectively travelling from one place in India to another), the Governor said, “In my meeting with Sushmaji I also cited the instance of erstwhile divided Germany when people from West German used to go to Berlin through East Germany but there was no passport visa involved”.
In both the cases, the Governor said the External Affairs Minister has assured him to take up the matters with Bangladesh authorities. “I should say, her response to both my requests were very positive,” the Governor said.
It may be mentioned here that the Tetulia Corridor is a proposed about 6 kilometres passage that would connect the political subdivision of Chopra in North Dinajpur district to the towns of Jalpaiguri and Mainaguri in Jalpaiguri district in West Bengal, through Tetulia Upazila in Bangladesh.
When the flyover comes up and the corridor is functional, this will effectively make travel between rest of India and the north east much quicker and easier. This move will boost trade and commerce activities for the people of north east, Mr Roy said. The Volvo bus service between Agartala and Kolkata was re-launched after much fanfare in 2015.