Gitaldaha railway station
|Indian Railway Station|
|Location||Cooch Behar, West Bengal
|Status||Line out of service|
|Previous names||Cooch Behar State Railway|
|Defunct Lalmonirhat-Geetaldaha Line|
Gitaldaha (Bengali: গীতলদহ ) (also spelled Geetaldaha) was a railway station and is a defunct rail transit point on the India-Bangladesh border in Cooch Behar district in the Indian state of West Bengal. The corresponding point on the Bangladesh side is Mogalhat in Lalmonirhat District.
By the turn of the nineteenth century Lalmonirhat railway station had emerged as an important railway centre. Bengal Dooars Railway constructed a line to Malbazar. Cooch Behar State Railway constructed the Gitaldaha-Jayanti narrow gauge line. Links were established with Assam, with the Golokganj-Amingaon line coming up. In pre-independence days, a 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 3⁄8 in) wide metre gauge line running via Radhikapur, Biral, Parbatipur, Tista, Gitaldaha and Golokganj connected Fakiragram in Assam with Katihar in Bihar.
The Geetaldaha-Mogalhat link was there in 1955, when India and Pakistan signed an agreement regarding resumption of rail traffic. Subsequently, a part of the bridge across the Dharla River at was washed away transforming Geetaldaha-Mogalhat into a defunct railway transit point.
Broad gauge line
Up to the sixties there was a railway link from Cooch Behar to Dhubri via Golokganj. It was then known as the Assam Line Railway Service. It also connected East Pakistan, even after partition, However, collapse of the rail-cum-road bridge over the Gangadhar in the seventies ended that link. Now the bridge has been rebuilt and the track laid again as broad gauge. As of early 2012, train services on the track are expected soon. With the conversion of the Alipurduar-Bamanhat branch line to 1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in) Broad gauge in 2007, and its subsequent recommissioning, there is a station named New Gitaldaha on the line, near where Geetaldaha earlier was.
Sonahat on the Dhubri district-Kurigram District border is another defunct rail transit point. Sonahat was once connected to Kurigram by a metre gauge railway. The railway bridge across the Dudhkumor River is still there. In 1955 when India and Pakistan signed an agreement regarding resumption of rail traffic, the link had already been lost because of the wash out of another bridge, possibly across the Dharla, in what is now Bangladesh. Bangladesh wants to develop Sonahat as a "land port".
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