187yrs-old Teesta Rail Bridge still standing with stolen nut-bolts
Published: 04:40 PM, 12 April 2021
187-years-old Teesta Railway Bridge
More than 187-years-old Teesta Railway Bridge is still standing with a strong capacity even after so many years of construction. With the old nuts and bolts and other machinery, this largest-size railway bridge has kept the railway communication intact with the northern districts including Lalmonirhat-Kurigram-Rangpur.
The term of the bridge, built on Teesta River in Teesta mouza of Gokunda UP of Lalmonirhat, has expired about 100 years ago. Due to lack of surveillance, various pieces of equipment including nuts and bolts of the bridge are being stolen. However, 16 trains travel safely across the bridge every day.
It is learned that the Northern Bengal State Railway, an institution of the then British government, built the bridge in 1834 with a length of 2,110 feet (643 meters) with the estimation of 100 years’ duration.
The trains are crossing the Teesta railway bridge, connecting Lalmonirhat and Kurigram almost 87 years after its expiration. However, Bangladesh Railway’s Lalmonirhat zone claimed that “the bridge is not so risky even after 200 years of construction.”
On the spot, it was seen that some wooden slippers of the Teesta railway bridge had rotted. The clip was stolen, rusted on the nut-bolt of the fishplate used in the two rows of the bridge.
In the beginning, the Teesta railway bridge was used only for rail communication. After verifying the feasibility and sustainability of ensuring road connectivity with Lalmonirhat and Kurigram across the country, on March 4, 1978, rail communication along with traffic vehicles was officially launched over the bridge. Since then, rail and road continued on the Teesta Railway Bridge.
However, the construction of the new Teesta Bridge began in 2006 out of fear that there would be more pressure on the bridge and ended in 2012. From then on, only trains run on the railway bridge.
Lalmonirhat Divisional Railway Manager Shah Sufi Noor Mohammad said even though the Teesta railway bridge has expired, there is no problem in running trains. However, nuts, bolts and slippers are being stolen from some parts of the bridge. This has become a threat to the movement of trains. Manpower has been recruited for the maintenance of the Teesta railway bridge.