Bangladesh Railway (BR) has planned to bring its entire network under an integrated telecommunication system through setting up of a 575-kilometre optical fibre line over 44 upazilas under 17 districts to build a much safer and more secure train communication system, reports UNB.
This effort is also meant for coping up with the growing number of railway tracks as well as bogies and engines.
"The Ministry of Railways has proposed a draft project to this end titled 'Establishing and launching optical fibre-based telecommunication system in 575 kilometres of secondary line of Bangladesh Railway' to the Planning Commission (PC)," said a PC official.
The official said the BR will implement the proposed project from January 2018 to June 2020 with an estimated cost of Tk 781.3 million to be entirely borne from the national exchequer.
The project will soon be placed before an ECNEC meeting for its approval, the official added. The project aims to launch experienced and integrated telecommunication network under the BR which will also help boost the operational efficiency of railway and thus enhance its revenue income alongside ensuring security in train operations.
Besides, the country's people will be able to enjoy better telecommunication facilities accelerating the 'Digital Bangladesh' drive.
Talking to the news agency, an official at the Ministry of Railways said the BR had first launched an optical fibre-based integrated telecommunication system back in 1992 with Norwegian grant under which optical fibre over some 1600 kilometres had been set up.
Then the BR in association with leading telecom operator Grameenphone set up another 439 kilometres of optical fibre, which the private cell phone operator has now been operating commercially.
"The railway has recently set up some 400 kilometres of optical fibre and work is on to set up another 569 kilometres of new optical fibre. But, this was not enough to bring the whole of the BR under optical fibre network communication system," the official added.
The official said the BR still has no optical fibre on its remaining 575 kilometres of secondary line and the telecommunications operation centring over these lines is based on copper cable which has many limitations in addition to failure to provide desired services.
Another official at the Ministry of Railways said the project will cover seven upazilas of Mymensingh, Netrakona, Jamalpur, Tangail and Rajbari districts under Dhaka division, four upazilas of Chittagong, Comilla and Noakhali districts under Chittagong Division, three upazilas under Jessore district of Khulna division, six upazilas under Rajshahi and Chapainawabganj districts of Rajshahi division, and some 23 upazilas under Dinajpur, Thakurgaon, Panchagarh, Nilphamari, Lalmonirhat and Kurigram districts under Rangpur division.
The main project operations include erecting 52 kilometres of optical fibre from Gouripur to Mohonganj, 21-km optical fibre line from Shyamganj to Jariajhanjail, 38-km optical fibre line from Tarakandi to the east end of Bangabandhu Bridge, 101-km optical fibre line from Laksham to Noakhali, 2-km line from Foteyabad to Chittagong University, 102-km optical fibre line from Dinajpur to Panchagarh, 6-km line on Kanchan-Birol, 52-km line on Syedpur-Chilahati, 84-km line on Lalmonirhat-Burimari, 47-km line from Teesta Junction to Ramna Bazar, 11-km line from Pachuria to Goalandoghat, 35-km line from Jessore to Benapole, 53-km line from Rajshahi to Chapainawabganj and 25-km optical fibre line from Amnura to Rohonpur.
These optical fibre cables will go through underground high-density polyethylene pipeline.
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