- Rail lines and platform are being extended to accommodate 18 train coaches
- Platform has been elevated, so that children and sick people can get on and off trains easily
- Analogue system will replaced with a computerised, digitalised system
- 26.52km rail tracks from Ishwardi to the Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant are being constructed
- Toilets, waiting room, sitting arrangement will be renovated
Several measures have been taken to develop and modernise the Ishwardi Junction railway station in Pabna that was neglected for a long time.
The rail lines and platforms are being extended to accommodate 18 train coaches, repairing the existing tracks, and renovating the platform, passenger sheds, toilets, waiting room, sitting arrangement, and signal system.
In addition to these, they are also setting up new rail tracks from Ishwardi to the Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant which marks a new era in Bangladesh's history.
Sources said the Ishwardi Junction station was established during the British era. After Bangladesh became independent, the station was not modernised to keep up with the demand of the time.
The station was operating with an old building. Its platform was too low for the trains, the shades were perforated, the waiting room was in an unhealthy condition and the toilets were dirty and unusable.
Besides, the sitting arrangement for passengers at the station was inadequate, and the lines were dilapidated. All these gradually turned the station into a safe haven for drug addicts, thieves, snatchers, and fraudsters.
Railway Minister Nurul Islam Sujan inspected Iswardi Junction on June 22, 2019. At that time local politicians and passengers informed him about the problems at the station. The minister listened to their complaints and directed the general manager of the Bangladesh Railway's western region to solve these problems.
Following his directive, the Ministry of Railways took a project worth Tk335 crore to set up new lines and improve the quality of services at the station.
Under the project the platform has been elevated so that children, elderly and sick people can easily get on and off the trains at the station.
Asadur Rahman Biru, a resident of Ishwardi upazila said many elderly and sick people travelling to and from the area were suffering due to the poor condition of the railway station.
Asaduzzaman Asif, a local media person, said, "Elevating the platform has solved the problem for sick people who use the railway station. Now patients can go to Rajshahi, Dhaka and Kolkata easily by train."
Asif said that now it is necessary to modernise the toilets, waiting room and passenger shed at the station.
The authorities are also setting up a new signal building and digitalising the system.
Pakshi Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) Asadul Haque said, "All facilities necessary to modernise the station and make it suitable for our time will be put in place. The analogue system will be replaced with a computerised and digitalised system, and the whole station area will be operated with technology."
A joint venture of an Indian company GPT Infraprojects Ltd and two Bangladeshi companies — Standard Engineers Ltd and Castle Construction Company Ltd – is setting up 26.52km of rail lines from Ishwardi to the Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant. The project costs Tk297.55 crore.
Under the project they will also construct 13 level crossings, one B-grade station building, one platform and seven box culverts.
DRM Asadul said, "The Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant is an important project of the government. The rail track is being set up to carry material and equipment to the project site."
The rail line will help transport material for the project from Khulna and Chattogram within a short time.