Big moment for Inland Water Transport in India! Vessel reaches Patna from Kolkata along Ganga
Bihar's capital Patna witnessed a new landmark in India’s Inland Water Transport (IWT) sector late Frinday when 16 TEUs of container cargo of food giants PepsiCo India and Emami Agrotech Ltd reached the city’s Gaighat IWT terminal on river Ganga from Kolkata.
16 TEUs are equivalent to 16 truckloads. With the 815 kms long voyage, was a momentous one with the opening up Kolkata-Patna has opened as new Origin-Destination pair on Inland Waterways. On November 12, 2018, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had received the country’s first IWT containerised cargo that reached Varanasi from Kolkata.
A Ministry of Shipping release today said, "Plans are at an advanced stage to operationalise Patna-Varanasi sector of NW-1 for container cargo movement."
"Container cargo transport comes with several inherent advantages. Even as it reduces the handling cost, allows easier modal shift, reduces pilferages and damage, it also enables cargo owners to reduce their carbon footprints," it added.
The Ministry of Shipping is developing NW-1 (River Ganga) under Jal Marg Vikas Project (JMVP) from Haldia to Varanasi (1390 Km) with the technical and financial assistance of the World Bank at an estimated cost of Rs 5369 crore.
The project would enable commercial navigation of vessels with capacity of 1500-2,000 DWT.
The waterways is expected to boost the region’s growth and employment. According to the World Bank economic analysis, of the 1.5 lakh direct and indirect employment opportunities to be created due to interventions under JMVP, 50,000 will be in Bihar alone.