: Chief Minister Oommen Chandy inaugurated the newly constructed Bailey bridge and diversion road linking the Sannidhanam with Chandranandan Road at Sabarimala on Monday.
The Madras Engineer Group of the Indian Army constructed the 40-metre-long, 3.3-metre-wide Bailey bridge within 25 days with iron girders and other components brought from Jodhpur in Rajasthan.
The Kerala Police Housing Construct Corporation (KPHCC) constructed the 428-metre-long, 5-metre-wide diversion road at a cost of Rs.1.22 crore. The construction work was carried out by
Rajagiri Constructions Ltd.
As envisaged in the Sabarimala Master Plan, the new road will be utilised as the exit route for pilgrims returning from Sabarimala during the festival season.
The Chief Minister said the bridge was built within such a short span of time due to the initiative taken by Union Defence Minister A.K. Antony.
Mr Chandy presented a ‘Ponnada' to senior architect G.Mahesh of the Chennai-based Pithavadian and Partners, who has designed the new road as a combination of steps and ramps.
Maj. Gen. Subrato Mitra of the Indian Army; K.S.Jangpangi, KPHCC managing director; and Rajagopal, contractor of the civil works; were also felicitated at the function.
Devaswom Minister V.S. Sivakumar presided over the inaugural function.
Finance Minister K.M. Mani; Revenue Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan; M. Rajgopalan Nair, TDB president; and K.Jayakumar, Additional Chief Secretary; also spoke.