Arunachal Pradesh gets a strategic bridge leading to China border

The bridge on the Siyom River was among 28 projects of the Border Roads Organisation Defence Minister Rajnath Singh dedicated to the nation

January 03, 2023 05:08 pm | Updated 06:30 pm IST - GUWAHATI

Siyom Bridge in Arunachal Pradesh on the day of its inauguration by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, on January 2023. Twitter/@rajnathsingh

Siyom Bridge in Arunachal Pradesh on the day of its inauguration by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, on January 2023. Twitter/@rajnathsingh

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday inaugurated 28 vital projects, mostly along the border with China, from a strategic bridge in Arunachal Pradesh.

These projects — 12 in the Union Territories of Ladakh and Jammu & Kashmir, five in Arunachal Pradesh, three each in Sikkim, Punjab and Uttarakhand, and two in Rajasthan — were completed by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) at a cost of ₹724 crore.

Also read: We do not believe in war, but if it is forced upon us, we will fight: Rajnath Singh

Mr. Singh unveiled these projects from the 100 metres-long Siyom bridge on the Along-Yingkiong Road over the Siyom river in Siang district. This class 70 steel arch superstructure bridge is crucial for troops to reach the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the central part of Arunachal Pradesh, primarily the Tuting subdivision bordering China.

These areas were once connected by a Bailey suspension bridge across the Siyom river. A flash flood washed it away in June 2021, killing three persons and disrupting communication to the border areas.

Among the other projects is a bridge across the Oyong river in Kurung Kumey district connecting Huri village, one of the remotest villages in India along the LAC.

Underlining India’s efforts to develop the border areas, Mr. Singh said India has neither started a war against any country nor grabbed an inch of land from any country. “But we should never be taken for granted. Our troops are capable of facing any challenges along the borders,” he said.

He lauded the BRO’s commitment to establishing connectivity in far-flung areas by ensuring timely completion of these roads and bridges. “Along with these 28, the BRO dedicated to the nation a record 103 infrastructure projects completed in 2022,” Mr. Singh said.

BRO officials said the “signature Siyom bridge” is of strategic importance to the defence forces and will facilitate speedy induction of troops, heavy equipment and mechanised vehicles to forward areas of Upper Siang district besides boosting socio-economic development of the region.

Mr. Singh also released a compendium incorporating the latest technologies adopted by the BRO in the construction of roads, bridges, airfields and tunnels “to negate the effects of remote and hostile terrain with adverse weather condition which unduly affects the quality of civil engineering works and meeting the timelines of completion of the projects”.

These include the patented LITHELYARCH technology for the construction of a cut-and-cover tunnel in Ladakh.

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