On 24 May 2017, the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India inaugurated the Longest bridge in the country. The bridge is named Dhola- Sadiya Bridge and is also referred to as Bhupen Hazarika Setu, after a renowned playback singer. The bridge is a three-lane road bridge and is 9.15 kilometers or 5.69 miles long. The Dhola- Sadiya Bridge is 3.55 kilometers or 2.3 miles longer than the Bandra-Worli sea link in Mumbai.Embed from Getty Images
The Dhola- Sadiya Bridge is built over the Lohit river, a left tributary of the Brahmaputra river. The Dhola- Sadiya Bridge would connect the Sadiya region on the Northern side of the Assam and Dhola region on the eastern side of Arunachal Pradesh. The bridge is expected to cut down the travel between the two states by four hours, as anybody can easily cross the bridge within 20 minutes.
The Dhola- Sadiya Bridge would ensure good connectivity between Assam and Arunachal Pradesh since there is no available Airport in Arunachal Pradesh. Before the construction of the Dhola- Sadiya Bridge, the only means to cross the river was by using ferry boats.
The Dhola- Sadiya Bridge is constructed under the Ministry of Road Transport and highway’s supervision under the special accelerated Road Development program for the North-East region. The construction cost of the bridge is estimated to be around Rs 2,056 crores.
The bridge would also help magnify the defense capability in the Northeastern region of the LAC, as the bridge would benefit the army by reducing the travel time to the posts along the Line of Actual Control in the Indo- China border region in Arunachal Pradesh. The bridge is designed to handle weight up to 60 tones or 54431.1 Kgs, making it ideal for facilitating the movement of army vehicles, tanks, and convoys. This capacity makes the Dhola- Sadiya Bridge a tactical and strategical asset of the country.
The significance of the Dhola- Sadiya Bridge can be gaged by the fact that China has laid down numerous roads across the LAC, which makes it a priority for India to improve the road connectivity alongside the border region.