The trial run of the much-awaited Guwahati-Dhaka bus service will be flagged off from here tomorrow, with governments in both countries looking forward to make it a regular service in the days to come.
A 32-seater deluxe AC bus of the Assam State Transport Corporation will carry a 22-member joint delegation of both countries, with the bus covering about 500 kms in its maiden run that will also touch Shillong. The bus will pass through Shillong and proceed to Dawki on the international border, where the delegation will be transferred to another bus to proceed from Tamabil (Bangladesh) for a night halt at Sylhet. The bus will proceed to Dhaka on Thursday morning.
“Tomorrow’s will be a trial run as well as a joint survey during which officials from the government of India as well as the Bangladesh government will travel together and identify hurdles if any in order to make the bus service a regular feature in the future,” Bipulananda Pathak, joint commissione of transport, government of Assam, told The Indian Express here on Tuesday. W Blah, Superintending Engineer of the ministry of road transport and highways, will lead the Indian delegation.
The 22 officials who will comprise the joint survey team will have seven delegates from Dhaka, four each from the Assam and Meghalaya governments and seven from various ministries and departments of the central government. “Officials from the ministries of external affairs, home, transport and finance are also part of the Indian delegation,” Pathak said.
The “dry run” that will not have any regular passenger will also assess route conditions and other technical parameters. The trial run will conclude at Dhaka on the December 12 and officials of the two sides are expected to submit their reports on the details and feasibility of starting of the regular bus services within a few days.
Two passenger bus services – one between Kolkata and Dhaka and the other between Agartala and Dhaka – already operating between the two countries. Negotiations with Bangladesh for starting the bus services from Guwahati and Shillong have been underway for the past several months and have gathered momentum in the recent weeks.