The Diesel Electrical Multiple Unit railcar commuter service between Dhaka and Narayanganj has not yet started in full swing.
Although the Bangladesh Railway had planned to run the new train for 16 trips, up and down, at present it runs only six trips.Earlier, the DEMU railcar service remained suspended since April 25, a day after its inauguration, as 20 passengers fell sick at Chashara railway station owing to suffocation.
The railway minister, Mohammad Mazibul Hoque, told New Age on April 27 that the Chinese experts were working to keep the railcar’s windows fully open, which were usually remain half open.
The service resumed on April 30.
Kamalapur railway station master Shakhawat Hossian Khan told New Age on Thursday that the new train was running for six trips.
The DEMU train leaves Dhaka at 5:40am, 1:40pm and 10:00pm.
Earlier, the BR used local trains to operate 28 trips, up and down, between the two destinations every day.
The authorities had announced earlier that one of the local trains would be withdrawn after the inauguration of the DEMU train and then the new train and one local train would run for 32 trips, up and down.
But the new trips have not started yet while the two local trains are still giving 22 trips.
While asked about the reason, the railway’s divisional railway manager (Dhaka), Sardar Shahadat Ali, said as another DEMU train was not put on the route, the new train was giving six trips.
He said that when another train would be inaugurated, the DEMU trains would cover 32 trips as per the plan.
Earlier the railway minister had told New Age that another DEMU train would be launched on the same route about 15 days after the launching of the first one.
BR fixed one-way fare per passenger at Tk 15 for the 40 minute journey.
The Chinese built DEMU railcar, with two engines at both ends, provides comfortable space for 300 passengers — 149 seating and 151 standing.
Bangladesh Railway increased its passenger carrying capacity by joining two carriages, said officials.
The railcar’s 460-horsepower engine has a maximum speed of 80 kilometres per hour, they said.
China’s Tangshan Railway Vehicle Company Limited won the supply contact.
A multiple unit railcar, DEMU consists of self-propelled carriages powered by on-board diesel engines.
-With New Age input