PM orders proper renovation of shabby rail bridges
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Sunday directed the Railways Ministry to properly repair shabby rail bridges across the country and take a project to this end.
"The old rail bridges will have to be repaired properly… I think all the old and worn-out rail bridges will have to be repaired after conducting a survey across the country," she said.
The Prime Minister gave the directive while opening a number of development projects, including two water treatment plants, two bridges and several train services through videoconferencing from her official residence Ganobhaban.
Sheikh Hasina said if a separate project is undertaken to repair the old rail bridges, the government will approve it.
She said trains run at a very slow pace and take more time to reach their destinations due to the old and shabby bridges. Besides, the PM said, there are risks of accidents because of the old bridges. The Prime Minister said Bangladesh Railway can repair its tracks and bridges quickly with its own financing.
She regretted that previous governments had plans to close down train services under a golden-handshake programme and they shut down the train services on different routes. "I think it was a suicidal decision."
Sheikh Hasina said the government is setting up railway networks throughout the country as people travel through trains safely and comfortably at cheaper fares.
Talking about water treatment plants, the Prime Minister urged all to exercise austerity in using water as it takes huge money to purify water in treatment plants. "You've to exercise austerity in using water and stop wasting water."
About the country's economic progress, the Prime Minister said it will not be possible to ensure overall development of a country by only making Dhaka-centric development.
"No country can be developed without socio-economic advancement of the grassroots people," she said. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal, Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen, Information Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud, LGRD and Cooperatives Minister Md Tajul Islam, Railways Minister Md Nurul Islam Sujon and former minister Matia Chowdhury MP were present on the dais. -UNB