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A cross border cruise is set to launch on Narayanganj-Kolkata naval route from March 29 to raise bilateral relations between Bangladesh and India. - A home for your website

“Travelers of both countries will enjoy beauty of the mystic Sundarbans and river route of Bangladesh,” Chairman of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation (BIWTC) Pranoy Kanti Biswas told the news agency on Wednesday.

The passenger vessel “MV Madhumoti” would start its journey from Pagla VIP terminal with Kolkata bound passengers, he said.

The water carrier can ferry around 650 passengers onboard, which would travel through Barishal and the Sundarbans to Kolkata.

Earlier, the shipping ministries of the two countries finalised the Standard Operating Procedure (SoP) for movement of passenger and cruise vessels on the coastal and designated inland routes between the two neighbours.

According to a BIWTC official, recently the shipping ministry received a letter from the Inland Waterways Authority of India that RV Bengal Ganga wants to start cruise service from Kolkata in March.

He said once upon a time, there was a steamer service on Assam-Goalanda-Narayanganj-Kolkata-Elahabad route during the British rule.

Now, cruise operators have shown their interest to use Kolkata-Haldia-Raimongal-Chalna-Khulna-Mongla-Kawkhali-Barishal-Hizla-Chandpur-Narayanganj-Aricha-Sirajganj-Bahadurabad-Chilmari-Dhubri-Pandu-Shilghat (Assam) route, stretching 1,535km, the official said.

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