National, Front Page

Cox’s Bazar Express rolls out in pomp

Published : 02 Dec 2023 04:15 PM | Updated : 02 Dec 2023 04:15 PM

Cox’s Bazar, the major tourist attraction renowned for the tranquil melody of its crashing waves, now resonates with an additional symphony—the rhythmic chug of trains, marking the inaugural journey of Cox’s Bazar Express on Friday.

Beyond the azure horizons and pristine beaches, the resonance of train journeys heralds a new era, promising not just transportation but a conduit for dreams, opportunities, and a brighter future. 

At the stroke of noon, the Cox’s Bazar Express commenced its momentous journey from the newly constructed iconic station in Cox's Bazar, bound for Dhaka’s Kamalapur railway station with 1200 passengers on board. 

Railways Secretary Md. Humayun Kabir formally inaugurated the service. 

He said, “Commercial operation has started under the instruction of the Prime Minister. This inter-city train will run from Cox’s Bazar to Dhaka and Dhaka to Cox’s Bazar with 20 coaches. If the demand increases, the compartments will also be increased.”

The non-stop train, living up to its name, is set to reach Dhaka at 9:10 PM after a brief 20-minute stop at Chattogram railway station at 3:40 PM. The preparations for the departure began at 10 AM, attracting early-bird passengers eager to witness and be part of this significant moment in Bangladesh’s railway history.

Passengers entering the station were welcomed by the oyster fountain, a notable feature of the Chander Para station. Floral greetings extended by tourist police while railway authorities warmly welcomed the inaugural train passengers. The railway platform saw not only the arriving travellers but also a gathering of enthusiastic locals. The atmosphere was charged with excitement, particularly among the tourists eager to be part of this historic moment.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina had inaugurated the Cox's Bazar route train service on November 11, setting the stage for the commencement of ticket sales on November 23. Remarkably, all tickets were sold out within a few hours, reflecting the high demand and enthusiasm for this new connection.

The fare structure for the Cox's Bazar Express includes Tk 695 for a chair, Tk 1,325 for an AC chair, Tk 1,590 for Snigdha (AC seat) class, and Tk 2,380 for an AC berth (sleeping seat). For passengers traveling from Chattogram Railway Station to Cox’s Bazar, the fares range from Tk 205 for a Shovon chair to Tk 696 for an AC berth.

The Bangladesh Railways Director General Md. Kamrul Ahsan, expressed his satisfaction with the successful initiation of this route and emphasized its positive impact on tourism and transportation in the region.

The Cox’s Bazar Express, which will operate from Dhaka on Mondays and from Cox’s Bazar on Tuesdays, is poised to become a vital link connecting these two key cities, fostering economic development and enhancing connectivity for the people of Bangladesh. 

The commencement of this train service has sparked widespread interest and excitement among the mass people, including tourists. This development has opened up new avenues for the tourism industry in Cox’s Bazar, with a substantial number of visitors having already reserved accommodations in anticipation of their trip. 

Notably, all train tickets for this route have been completely sold out in advance until December 10, underscoring the immense popularity and demand generated by this newly operational service.