A Bullet From Kunming To Kolkata
China plans to launch a bullet train service from Kunming – the modern capital city and transportation hub of China’s southern Yunnan Province – to the eastern Indian city of Kolkata!
Speaking at an event jointly organised by Chinese Embassy and Observer Research Foundation in Kolkata, the Chinese Consul General recently said that the bullet train would reach the Indian city from Kunming via Myanmar and Bangladesh. He also said that Beijing decided to launch the service in an attempt to boost communication, trade, cultural and economic ties between the four Asian nations.
Consul General Ma Zhanwu told the audience: “We are eagerly waiting for launching the service on this route. The proposed move will easily integrate the four countries through the railways and entire Asia will be benefited.”
Although the senior Chinese official didn’t disclose the detailed plan, sources close to the Chinese Embassy said that the train would begin its journey from Kunming and reach Mandalay (Myanmar) first. And then, it will travel to Chittagong and Dhaka (Bangladesh). Finally, the train will reach Kolkata. It means that the railway service will cover the BCIM (Bangladesh, China, India and Myanmar) Economic Corridor.
Meanwhile, the consul general clarified that Beijing had no plan to interfere in internal affairs of neighbouring countries through this project. “We have implemented similar projects with Russia to promote bilateral co-operation. And we are interested in strengthening co-operation with India,” Ma told the audience.
Experts from three Kolkata-based universities, the Indian Institute of Management, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Yunnan Academy of Social Sciences and Sichuan Academy of Social Sciences attended the event.
Chinese President Xi & Indian PM Modi
It is to be noted that China has been showing interest in launching a bullet train service from Kunming to Kolkata for the last five years. A Car Rally was organised from Kolkata to Kunming in 2013 to promote the idea. However, the route of the rally was slightly different, as the participants had reached Kunming from Kolkata via Dhaka, Sylhet (both in Bangladesh), Silchar, Jiribam, Jirighat, Imphal, Moreh-Tamu (in India), Mandalay (Myanmar) and Ruili (China).
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