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Old 3rd November 2020, 13:45   #1066
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by rahul4640 View Post
In case you have returned back via Dumka, please let me know. I am planning to leave Kolkata for Siliguri in a day or two and may like to take the Dumka route. I have options to stay at Dumka in a friend's house, so may even like to stop overnight there and leave for Bhagalpur early in the morning.
Haven't yet returned. Shall start my return leg on the 5th of November. However I am coming via Deogarh and not through Dumka. Shall update about the road conditions of the stretch I cover once I am back.
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Old 3rd November 2020, 13:48   #1067
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by ABHI_1512 View Post
Bhagalpur route is the one I took while returning from Siliguri, a fortnight back. The route despite of being long, is still better than our Bengal route, at least surface wise. The bridge collapse near Dumka can be avoided by either taking the Jama-Palajori-Jamtara route or taking a village road detour of around seven kilometres to connect back to Dumka- Hansdiha- Bhagalpur bypass. The road surface is bad for some kilometres before Bhagalpur bypass but more or less, can be negotiated easily. Rest of the route is brilliant through Purnea- Araria- Naxalbari- Siliguri. There are two broken bridges after Araria and should ideally be crossed during morning or evening to avoid peak time traffic.
Appreciate the update. Hope to have a relaxing drive back.
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Old 3rd November 2020, 21:24   #1068
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by esaidrive8656 View Post
Appreciate the update. Hope to have a relaxing drive back.
I have taken the Bhagalpur route for second time in my life to return to Calcutta. Have not taken this route even during the horrible days of Kaliachak, Farrakka, Sujapur and Dalkhola, even some 10-15 years back. An overnight drive usually took around 10-12 hours max to reach Siliguri but the last time during early part of October this year, I had to bear the brunt of some bad craters near Kuli due to rains and some part of Moregram and Sujapur as well.

One may be an experienced driver and still get distracted by some bad pothole while it rains heavily. Ayrton Senna would not have died on the tracks if everyone thought that one who ruled the tracks will not have any accidents ever. Everyone wants to do a comfortable drive, if one is willing to travel around 130 kilometers extra, burning one's money as well for that feeling, then I guess no one should have any problems with that. You are entitled to have your relaxing drive through Bihar and Jharkhand, just like one having an 4x4 SUV would find crossing the craters near Kuli and Moregram relaxing !!

But as SayakC mentioned very clearly earlier, it seems some repairs have been carried out since I last travelled. Either way, my observations about NH34 and SH7 (earlier in the thread) were made taking rains into consideration. Also, the onward side to Calcutta is in a better shape than the Siliguri side. You have a safe drive back, cheers.


P.S- I will again take the Burdwan-SH7-Moregram again in a fortnight to see whether I still have got the driving skills left or not to dodge the potholes

Last edited by ABHI_1512 : 3rd November 2020 at 21:37.
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Old 7th November 2020, 12:49   #1069
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

Began my return journey from Kalimpong on the 5th of November. Returned via the Bhagalpur Dumka route, with a night halt at Bhagalpur. In comparison to the Burdwan Moregram route, I found this route to be the better one for a relaxing and an enjoyable drive. Apart from a few kilometers of bad roads in a detour which had to be taken due to the bridge repair at Dumka, the road surface overall in this road fairs much better in comparison to the Bardhaman Malda route.
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Old 11th November 2020, 15:12   #1070
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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... I have been travelling on NH 34 since long but I don’t remember the surface to be so dreadful ever.
After our drive to Malda through NH-12 two weeks ago, I decided to lodge public grievance complaint for non-maintenance of NH-12 despite it being a toll road. I had filed the first formal complaint through PG-Portal on Oct 29, 2020 against Baharampore - Farakka section, together with the pictures, dates and locations of the damaged sections.

Today, I received the official response from the NHAI. They have now promised to do a major repair of all distressed locations starting from this month. Let's hope for the best.

Response from NHAI for 3 specific complaints of mine:
Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34-nhairesponsenh12.png

Last edited by gmhossain : 11th November 2020 at 15:15.
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Old 12th November 2020, 21:28   #1071
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

Hi Golam,

Thanks for updating the thread once again! Its great that you had logged the complaint.

1. Since I have not taken the Barasat-Baharampur route for quite sometime, pls let us know how many kms out of total kms are now 4 laned?

2. Also, do you have any update on the Dalkhola flyover? When I had travelled along that route in May 2019, the flyover construction was in full swing. Buy last I heard its not yet completed.

Cheers,
Sayak

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Originally Posted by gmhossain View Post
After our drive to Malda through NH-12 two weeks ago, I decided to lodge public grievance complaint for non-maintenance of NH-12 despite it being a toll road.

Last edited by sayakc : 12th November 2020 at 21:31.
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Old 13th November 2020, 12:49   #1072
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

Hi, can I get some advice? I am travelling from Ranchi to Siliguri tomorrow. I'm planning on taking the standard Google Maps route, turn-off at Ormanjhi - Phusro - Giridih - Jasidh, then turn-off at Katoria - Banka - Bhagalpur - Purnia (via Sameli-Dumar) - Bahadurganj - Bagdogra - Siliguri.

Any pointers on how good or bad this route is, especially with respect to road conditions. Any places I should be avoiding, or any suggestions for a better route?
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Old 13th November 2020, 19:03   #1073
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by sayakc View Post
1. Since I have not taken the Barasat-Baharampur route for quite sometime, pls let us know how many kms out of total kms are now 4 laned?
Thank you Sayak. As it stands, NH-12 route from NSCB Airport to Morgram now has ~101 KM 4-laned road out of 218 KM in total. However, they are scattered: (i) Airport - Dak Bungalow: 8 km, (ii) Bahadurpur - Sargachi: 66 (out of 75 km) and (iii) Shibpur - Morgram: 27 km. On the other hand, NH-19/SH-7 route has ~100 km 4-laned road out of 227 km. Nevertheless, the usual caveat still stands: 2-laned section of NH-12 carries much heavier traffic than that of SH-7.

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Originally Posted by sayakc View Post
2. Also, do you have any update on the Dalkhola flyover? When I had travelled along that route in May 2019, the flyover construction was in full swing. Buy last I heard its not yet completed.
Apparently, the Railways did not grant the requisite permission on time to launch the steel section over the railway lines. However, in the last month DM of North Dinajpur district issued a statement after meeting NHAI officials that Railways has now given the permission. So one-lane of Dalkhola bypass and both lane of Islampur bypass could become operational by next Dec-Jan. Again, these are the statements we should take with a pinch of salt! However, as an eternal optimist, let's hope for the best.

Cheers,

Last edited by gmhossain : 13th November 2020 at 19:05.
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Old 13th November 2020, 21:04   #1074
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

Gentlemen,
I went to Darjeeling from Calcutta, returning back yesterday. I tried both the routes for comparison. On my outward journey my route was via Asansol. Dumka, Bhagalpur, Purnia and Araria. Honestly speaking, substantial part of this route was broken. Immediately after Dumka the roads were totally damaged. Twenty kilometers south of Bhagalpur this road again turned bad. In Bhagalpur bypass I had to pay toll, while the road was very very poor. Even before Purnia town the road was having potholes of varying sizes. It was only after Purnia (travelling via Bahadurganj) that there was ideal road available. I had substantial joy driving between Araria and Purnia, where you may drive well in excess of triple digit speed. I was the only driver. Took me tweny hours and half to reach Darjeeling, with more than adequate stops and I was driving a Maruti SX-4.

While returning back from Darjeeling I took the road via Dalkhola, Baharampur, Baro Jagulia and then Kalyani Expressway. The highway upto Dalkhola was fair but some deep potholes or broken stretches appeared from nowhere, requiring me to slam on and test my brakes. I planned to take Dhantola-Botolbari route but failed to identify Dhantola as my mobile phone GPS hardly worked due to poor network connection. I realised my mistake once I passed Kishanganj and kept on driving, thinking whether to go via Dalkhola or via Bhagalpur/Dumka. But I was thirsty and few KMs ahead of Dalkhola I stopped in a dhaba for a cup of tea. Fortunately there was a North Bengal State Transport bus standing there. I met the driver and he insisted that there should not be much traffic mess in Dalkhola. Passed Dalkhola in thirty minutes. Surprisingly there was possibly a 10-15 KM long line of trucks in our opposite direction. Rest of the road thereafter varied from bad to excellent and it took me well over seventeen hours to reach home.
Regards,
Rahul Biswas,
Cossipore,
North Calcutta.
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Old 13th November 2020, 21:08   #1075
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by rahul4640 View Post
It was only after Purnia (travelling via Bahadurganj) that there was ideal road available.....
Regards,
Rahul Biswas,
Cossipore,
North Calcutta.
Sir, how was the condition of road between Araria and Siliguri via Bahadurganj? If you can give an update that will be very helpful.
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Old 13th November 2020, 21:43   #1076
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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how was the condition of road between Araria and Siliguri via Bahadurganj? If you can give an update that will be very helpful.
Excellent. Between Purnia and Araria it is a nicely maintained divided highway. Thereafter the road is also very nice, though it is an undivided two lane road.

However, I suggest that it is better for you if you do not try this route at night for security reasons, specially if you have your family or children with you in your car.
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Old 14th November 2020, 09:40   #1077
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

Thank Golam-da, you always prove to be a wealth of information on NH 34! And I will always take the Dec/Jan completion with a pinch of salt. When I had taken the Dalkhola bypass route in May,2019 I had enquired the locals who told that it should get completed in 2019 itself. Infact much of the sections were completed by then. However its not even done till now - a sad state of affairs :( .So, botolbari route I think in the foreseeable future.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gmhossain View Post
. Again, these are the statements we should take with a pinch of salt! However, as an eternal optimist, let's hope for the best.

Cheers,
Thanks Rahul-da. You were the only person who could provide the perspective of both the routes! A 130+kms longer route will always have its disadvantages - is something very well understood.
Next comes the SH7 route, I had taken the same while doing a return journey to Cooch Behar and each time I had clocked approx 16 hours. ABHI being an experienced driver may be he had to bear the brunt of the rains. Me, I will continue to take this take this route atleast for the next few months..travelling again in December, so will keep you all posted.

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Gentlemen,
I went to Darjeeling from Calcutta, returning back yesterday. I .

Last edited by sayakc : 14th November 2020 at 09:42.
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Old 15th November 2020, 19:51   #1078
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

Thanks gmhossain for taking the initiative to make a formal complaint to the NHAI. Some parts have been patched up indeed, specially near Sujapur. Also, some craters on NH 31 near Islampur are real bad and should be driven over carefully.

And thanks to SayakC as well since it was his travel report that made me take the usual SH7, NH34 and Dhantola combination to reach Siliguri. SH7 has been repaired substantially and the large craters have been filled by bricks. All the bad parts were between Futishanko and Kuli and those huge craters have been filled up.

Botolbaari side is little bad for around 10-15 kms probably but can be managed. I ended up with good timings both ways and took around 11 hours to reach Siliguri through the usual route. December will tell if the route will get even better or not, will update again. Islampur bypass is nearing completion and that is wonderful news. Dalkhola I am not so sure yet but hope floats
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Old 16th November 2020, 11:43   #1079
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

So, where did you go? Can we expect a travelogue ?

Also, when do you plan to travel in December? Me planning sometime in mid-December, but mine this time will be a run with my elderly parents so will halt somewhere in between.
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Originally Posted by ABHI_1512 View Post
Thanks gmhossain for taking the initiative to make a formal complaint to the NHAI. Some parts have been patched up indeed, specially near Sujapur. Also, some craters on NH 31 near Islampur are real bad and should be driven over carefully.
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Old 20th November 2020, 22:06   #1080
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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... December will tell if the route will get even better or not, will update again.
I guess, your wish is heard! For a significant part of Kaliachak - Sujapur stretch, the traffic has been diverted to use the newly constructed lane. The old tarmac is now being scrapped out.

Today, I received the response from NHAI on my second formal complaint lodged against the Farakka - Raiganj section of NH-12. Apart from the road repairing, they have also promised to complete the remaining 4-laning work in this section.

Response from NHAI on Farakka - Raiganj section:
Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34-nhairesponsefrhl.png

Supporting document that I had enclosed in my formal complaint
Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34-frhlsupportingdoc.png
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