PM Modi names India's longest bridge after Assamese legend Bhupen Hazarika

Xavier Trudeau
Juin 3, 2017

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, marking three years in power, yesterday inaugurated the country's longest bridge that spans the vast Brahmaputra River in the northeastern state of Assam.

Named after Assamese singer Bhupen Hazarika, who hailed from Sadia, this bridge will reduce the travel time between the two states from six hours to just one hour, reported PTI. It is 3.55 km longer than the Bandra-Worli sea link in Mumbai.

Earlier in a series of tweets, he even described the Dhola-Sadiya Bridge as one of the most important infrastructure projects to be undertaken in India.

"The bridge is going to help our troops get to parts that were earlier hard to reach in times of crises", said Mr Ajit Singh, a defence research fellow at New Delhi's Institute for Conflict Management.

Recalling how the concept of the bridge came about, Modi said that on May 29, 2003 an MLA from Assam's Tinsukia district, Jagadish Bhuyan, wrote a letter to Vajpayee demanding a bridge in the area.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Dhola-Sadiya Bridge, the nation's longest bridge that straddles the River Brahmaputra, on Friday.

Tej Hazarika added that credit for the naming was due to many appeals by the people of Assam, but also to Modi "for his sensitivity regarding my father's position in Assam", and to the chief minister of Assam, Sarbananda Sonowal.

With importance accorded to quick movement of military troops and artillery, the bridge has been created to allow movement of tanks, official sources said. "We are committed to serving the region & enhancing its progress".

"For five decades, you had been dreaming of the bridge".

If the farmers take up organic ginger farming, a global market would open up for them, he said. The construction of the bridge started in 2011. "Railways in the northeast hasn't received as much attention as it should have", Modi said.

The government is also constructing a 2,000km highway to connect the eastern part of Arunachal Pradesh to the western side at an estimated US$6 billion cost.

"Connectivity has always been a problem in the Northeast region". The new bridge has three lanes, is 9.16 kilometer long and is an architectural marvel.

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