Passenger movement thru Benapole port gets back to normal

Published : 05 Nov 2020 08:42 PM | Updated : 06 Nov 2020 05:45 AM

Passengers movement through the country’s largest land port in Jashaore ‘s Benapole have returned to normal with 265 Bangladeshis entering India and 43 Indians coming to Bangladesh on Wednesday.

Bangladeshis started traveling to India with new medical visas and old business visas in addition to having medical clearance on coronavirus.

Ninety percent of Bangladeshis passengers entering India are on medical visas since issuance of tourist visa is yet to start. 

Besides, rising number of Indian passengers are coming to Bangladesh daily, mostly on job and business visas, which remained halted for several months due to coronavirus pandemic.

Currently, Bangladeshis are traveling to India on medical, student and business visas and Indians are coming on job and business visas, said Mahasin Khan, inspector of Benapole Immigration Police. 

Passengers can also go on a diplomatic visa. Those going on medical purpose need a new visa while the old visa is applicable for business and student visas, he added.

As the virus broke out, India banned travel from and to Bangladesh on March 13, leaving hundreds of Bangladeshis stranded in the country and hampering the trade as well.

As communications return to normal, more passengers are now traveling through Benapole, mostly on medical and business purposes.

A Bangladeshi passport holder, Md Mahealam said he was going to 

India on medical and business purposes since the country relaxed the travel ban.

However, the medical visa is valid for 3 to 6 months and allow to travel to Indian only once, making the visa holders skeptical whether its issuance will bear fruit.

Benapole Immigration Health Department Medical Officer Sujan Sen said passengers from both the countries are required to have a medical clarence on Covid-19 test Corona within 72 hours of their journey.

The number of people seeking certificate is growing every day, he added.

According to the land port sources, about 3 million passengers travel in and out through Benapole route  annually.

Bangladesh earns a revenue of TK. 100 crore from traveling.