Birgunj (also Birganj) (Nepali: बिरगंज) is a sub-metropolitan municipality and border town in Parsa District in the Narayani Zone of southern Nepal.It is also called "Gateway of Nepal". It lies 283 km south of the capital Kathmandu, 3 km north of the border of the Indian state of Bihar. As an entry point to Nepal from Patna and Kolkata, it is also known as the gateway to Nepal. The town has significant economic importance for Nepal as a large part of goods enter Nepal through Birgunj via Raxaul on the Indian side. Tribhuvan Highway links it to Kathmandu.

Brigunj is located in the southern corner of the central region of Nepal. Birgunj was the only door to and from Nepal by road at first. It was the only city that connected the country with India. Birgunj railway station was connected by a metre gauge railway line to Raxaul station in Bihar across the border with India. The 39 km long metre gauge branch line of Indian Railways extended to Amlekhganj in Nepal. It was built in 1927 by the British but discontinued beyond Birgunj in December 1965.[2] The 6 km long railway track from Raxaul to Birgunj was converted to broad gauge two years after the Indian railways converted the track to Raxaul inside India to broad gauge. Now broad gauge railway line connects Raxaul to Sirsiya (Birgunj) Inland Container Depot (ICD) that became fully operational in 2005. Talks have been held to reopen the railway route from Birgunj to Amlekhganj in Nepal by converting it to broad gauge because of its socio-economic importance.

Goods are transported to India by trains to and from the Birgunj dry port, which is the key terminal of surface cargo delivery to Nepal. This cargo point on the south connects the heart of the country Kathmandu via another key industrial city Hetauda. It is also served by Tribhuvan Highway extending from the Indian border at Raxaul through Birgunj and Hetauda to Kathmandu with frequent bus service. Simara Airport - 18 km (11 mi) north near the highway in Pipara Simara, Bara district offers scheduled flights to Kathmandu.

India and Nepal have an open border with no restrictions on the movement of their without passport or visa. There is a customs checkpoint for the movement of goods and third country nationals.

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SFD: 2013/Nepal/Birgunj (last edited 2013-06-21 10:57:03 by iterators)