Suresh Prabhu, Union Minister for Railways flagged off the journey of increased frequency of Maitree Express from Kolkata station on Friday morning through video conferencing.
Speaking on the occasion, Prabhu said that India played a glorious role in the war of liberation in Bangladesh in 1971. He expressed the hope that both Nations will further improve the development process by joining hands. India is one of the prime nations in South-east Asia where the pace of development work is high.
He further said that the basic objective behind increasing the frequency of Maitree Express is to strengthen the international understanding between India and Bangladesh and to appreciate the cultural and social bonding of the people of the border nations.
Ghanshyam Singh, General Manager, Eastern Railway said that the increase in frequency of Maitree Express denotes the popularity of the train and best efforts are being taken to further improve the services of this train so that people of both the countries can avail the train comfortably and reach destination on time. Singh also said that this increased frequency is indeed a measure to create an atmosphere of friendship between the two nations.
It may be mentioned here that the Maitree Express was first introduced on April 14, 2008 on Bengali New Year, to fulfil the long cherished aspirations of India and Bangladesh.
At the initial stages, the train was leaving Kolkata and Dhaka on Saturday and Sunday. With the passage of time, the frequency of the train was increased to three days leaving Kolkata on Tuesday, Saturday and Monday and Dhaka on Wednesday, Friday & Sunday.
Now the train will leave Kolkata terminal on Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Monday at 7.10am and reach Dhaka at 6 pm on the same day. The train will leave Dhaka on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 8.10 am and reach Kolkata terminal at 6.10 pm the same day.