Have you seen a train?! Maybe only on films, TVs etc., not in real life unless you’ve visited abroad or at least India.
It’s been more than 150 years since the first passenger train came to operation in Europe. Now the railway is a major means of transportation all around the world. Yet, we Nepalis are nowhere near using the train for our daily travel even after this long.
The only railway in Nepal, dilapidated Janakpur Railway, is more a demonstration than for a real purpose. Moreover, it covers only a few area (in Terai). And it’s not even operating—it’s already been long– because of mismanagement and corruption.
Well, constructing railroad in our mostly rugged hills and mountains is certainly difficult and it demands a lot of technical expertise and budget. It’s beyond our tiny, fledgling economy. But it could have been constructed at least in the plains of Terai with ease. Connecting the whole Terai from east to west with the railway could have been a major achievement towards national development. Travel would be faster and much cheaper than by bus and air as railway is the cheapest (and also relatively safer) means of land transportation.
I’ve heard Baburam Bhattarai government is spending a good sum of money for railway development in the new budget. If so, let’s give a big clap to Mr. Bhattarai!