In a first, steel cargo-laden barge leaves Haldia port for Pandu

kolkata: The Union Minister of Ports, Shipping, Waterways & AYUSH Sarabananda Sonowal flagged off the voyage of steel cargo-laden barge destined to Pandu through the Indo-Bangladesh Protocol Route at Haldia port on Wednesday.

Minister-of-state for Ports, Shipping and Waterways Shantanu Thakur, Syama Prasad Mookerjee Port, Kolkata chairman, Vinit Kumar, MLA Tapasi Mondal and other officials were present on the occasion.

"The initiative is taken under the PM Gati Shakti programme. The main reason of this is to develop north east and strengthen relation with Bangladesh,"said Sonowal.

The maiden voyage of barges with a consignment of 178 MT finished steel products of Tata Steel Limited from Haldia to Pandu (in Assam) through the Indo-Bangladesh protocol route showcases multi-modal movement of cargo along with harnessing of the river- sea combination.

The consignment of steel products of Tata Steel Limited arrived at Haldia Dock Complex through Railway mode. The barges will move from Haldia to Pandu Terminal in Assam.

In return leg, the barges will load coal provided by Fuel Sources India Pvt. limited where LSC solutions is providing ground logistics support along with last-minute delivery and cargo is destined for unloading at Kolkata port.

"The water ways transport is cheap. If cost of transport of goods via road suppose is Rs 10. Then in case of Railway it will be Rs 5. And, for water transport it will be Rs 2," said Thakur. A MoU was also signed between Syama Prasad Mookerjee, Kolkata and M/s. Brahmaputra Cracker and Polymer Limited (BCPL) for setting up a streamlined logistic chain for movement of feed stock for petrochemical complex of BCPL at Lepetkata near Dibrugarh, from Haldia Dock Complex.

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