Bogibeel, India’s longest rail-cum-road bridge connecting Dibrugarh in Assam to Pasighat in Arunachal Pradesh, will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on December 25, ANI reported on Wednesday. The bridge, which has been constructed by the railways, is 4.94 km long and 32 metres above the water level of the Brahmaputra. It will be the second largest bridge in Asia with three-lane roads on top and a double-line railway track below.
The foundation stone of the bridge was laid in 1997 by then prime minister H D Deve Gowda but the work started only in 2002. The project, which has missed several deadlines, was supposed to be completed in June 2017 but got delayed.
The construction of the bridge will be a major boost in improving logistical support to the armed forces along the border in Arunachal Pradesh as India shares nearly a 4,000 km border with China.
The project also includes the development of a trans-Arunachal highway on the north bank of the Brahmaputra and new road and rail links over the mighty river and its major tributaries.
The bridge will significantly decrease the journey time from Guwahati to Delhi. Currently, a train journey via Guwahati takes 37 hours. With the bridge in place, the journey between Dibrugarh and Delhi will be shorter by three hours.