Eastern Railway is planning to renovate five heritage bungalows as heritage resorts in Sahibganj of Bihar under Malda Division. Talking to The Statesman, Mr Prashant Kumar Mishra, Chief Workshop Engineer of Eastern Railways, who is also holding the additional charge of Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) of Malda Division of ER informed that already one building has been renovated and four others will be renovated very soon.
“During my visit last week, I had come across five beautiful heritage bungalows in Sahibganj, which were in urgent need of restoration. The division team of Malda took this as a challenge and within one week resurrected one of the heritage bungalows after intensive repairing at a cost of Rs 3 lakhs only. It is planned to be used as river view ORH with its own private beach front,” Mr Prashant Kumar Mishra added.
The Malda Division is planning to restore two more heritage bungalows by the end of this month, ER sources said. Sahibgunj or Sahebganj was the largest railway township after Howrah in the loop line similar to Asansol with a thriving European population and huge infrastructure set-up. These bungalows with their thick brick walls, slanted roof, arches, chimney and fireplace, high ceilings, large open green spaces and riverside view are a testimony of elegance, comfort and old-world charm of colonial architecture.
These bungalows had virtually recreated the ambience of Europe in Railway townships of India, and at one time the famous stalwarts of East Indian Railways (EIR) had stayed in these five bungalows of the picturesque town of Sahubganj. The view of the river Ganges from the front of the newly renovated heritage bungalow resort is mesmerising and people can enjoy the tides and the scene, simply sitting on the two beautiful benches which has been set up on the foreground.
The interiors of the bungalows have been renovated keeping in mind its heritage and has been a fusion of the new millennium with that of the colonial era. These had been used as resthouses for railway officials.