Agartala: As the first consignment from Kolkata Port to Agartala and Assam via Chittagong sea-port of Bangladesh is supposed to enter Tripura in next two days, the business class and local people are very hopeful that the landlocked state of Tripura surrounded on three sides by a Bangladesh is going to turn into a new business hub.
On July 16, a new landmark took place in maritime relations between India and Bangladesh as the Indian Shipping Minister Mansukh Mandaviya virtually flagged off the first trial movement of container ships from Kolkata Port to Agartala in Tripura via Chittagong port in Bangladesh.
With this, the North-Eastern region of India which was earlier connected to the mainland by the ‘Chicken Neck’ and through hilly serpentine roads got access to sea-ports. The business section here expressed that the new water connectivity will greatly benefit India’s northeastern states by cutting transportation time and cost through land routes.
“It is a good thing for the people of Tripura. We were waiting for this for a long time. Sending commodities would be cost-effective now. It would surely benefit us,” said Gautam Paul, businessman.
At present, from Chittagong port, the consignment shall enter Tripura’s capital Agartala by road and from here shall be transported to other parts of the region by road or train.
Again a bridge over river Feni is been constructed at southern Tripura’s Sabroom town connecting Ramghar of Bangladesh and which is around 72 Km from Chittagong port.
This shall further ease the transportation from Tripura to Chittagong port and vice-versa.
The local population is hopeful of an economic boom due to the access to the seaport and viewed that with stability in this mode of communication in coming days the state shall turn into India’s gateway to Southeast Asia.
“Businessmen were waiting for this for a long time. It will open doors for the people of Tripura to new countries. Its impact would be unimaginable,” said Tushar Kanti Chakraborty (President, All Tripura Merchant Association.
India signed an MoU with Bangladesh in 2015 for the movement of Indian goods in Bangladesh through waterways, rail, road or multimodal transport. The Opening of this route strengthened the long-standing friendship between India and Bangladesh.
Job creation, boosting investment in the logistics sector, integration of supply chain facilities and promotion of business services such as transport, insurance are the major advantages for Bangladesh,” under the agreement. (ANI)